Meringues & elderflower cream

6FBA6E6D-09D0-4A02-B119-95D22D3E9090I can’t think of a more perfect weekend than the one we are forecast to make these delicious mini meringues, sandwiched together with whipped cream and a hint of elderflower. They are an absolute delight to eat, they look delicate and are very simple to prepare. Whenever I make meringues I tend to make the very big ones that are lovely with fruit or turned into Eaton mess, I’m not keen on meringue kisses but these I loved! They are just the right size without being sickly sweet. Perfect for tea in the garden, or iced coffee as I did. They would finish off a summer dinner party a treat. They can be made the day before and kept in an airtight container and the cream can be made ahead covered and kept in the fridge. Sandwich together just before serving. Below I will give you the recipe for the elderflower cream but this of course can be swapped for rose water ( not too much ) orange flower water or just vanilla. Put a little at a time and taste as you go, you can always add but you can’t takeaway!

The recipe makes approx 30 single meringues making 15 when finished. I’m the first to admit fiddly fancy baking isn’t my thing and it took a few attempts at piping them to get them looking right, to be honest I’m not sure they did look right and pairing them up was fun but who cares the taste is still the same and once the cream was in the middle I was happy with the result!

You of course don’t have to flavour the cream at all, you can just whip some cream add a dash of vanilla and you’re good to go, although I do recommend trying the flavoured cream because it has many uses, just with strawberries would be good or even replacing regular cream on a trifle in the summer. I could go on but I don’t think I need to tell you what you can use cream with!!

The meringue recipe is from a fabulous book The Little Library Cookbook by Kate Young. If you like a cookbook that’s more than pages full of recipes and you like a story behind them then I can highly recommend this book. It’s a little gem. The flavoured cream is my addition I hope you like it as much as I do.

You will need: Electric whisk or mixer, disposable piping bag, baking tray 

Ingredients:

For the meringues 

  • A slice of lemon
  • 1 egg white
  • 55g golden caster sugar

For the cream

  • 100ml double cream
  • 1 tbsp icing sugar
  • 1 tbsp elderflower cordial 

Method:

Preheat the oven to 110c/ 90 fan / gas 1/4.

Rub a slice of lemon around the inside of a bowl. ( I don’t always do this but I did this time! ) Tip the egg white into the bowl and whisk until it forms stiff peaks.

Continue to whisk on a low-medium speed, adding the sugar slowly. Once all the sugar has been added, whisk until the meringue forms stiff, glossy peaks. Transfer to a piping bag and snip a 1/2cm hole in the end. Line the baking tray with greaseproof paper, using a small blob of meringue in each corner to hold it down. I put a tea towel underneath mine to stop it moving around on the worktop, I didn’t want to be distracted by a moving baking tray!!!

You need to pipe them so they are approx 2cm in diameter, Kate says in her book that you need to hold the bag at a 90 degree angle to the tray and allow the meringue to spread from the central point, that went out the window and I just done the best I could!! They’re not going to spread much but leave a little space in between each one.

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Bake the meringues for an hour, until crisp on the outside and still soft in the middle. Turn off the oven and leave them in for another hour to cool.

When you’re ready to make the cream all you will need to do is whip the cream and icing sugar together until you have soft peaks, then fold the elderflower cordial in gently to taste.

I used a small palate knife to add the cream but the back of a teaspoon would be fine.

Make them this weekend enjoy them out in the sunshine and let me know what you thought!

Deb xx

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