Can you believe I've never made meringues before? I know, you are thinking, "seriously, Martha Wanna Be?" I have read a thousand recipes for meringues, yet never attempted. I thought they'd be to hard, I guess. These have only 13 calories and ZERO fat. Plus they are DELICIOUS!!!
I was extremely wrong. They ARE easy. I even made them while talking on the phone to my fellow food blogger...The Tipsy Gourmet. It's basically egg whites and sugar. Yep, that's about it! Well, a little vanilla and cream of tarter, but THAT'S IT!
So here is what I did:
I put the egg whites and cream of tarter into the kitchen aid mixer and beat until soft peaks formed. Then I added sugar until stiff peaks formed. When I asked the Tipsy Gourmet how to know it's just right, she said to turn the bowl upside down. It didn't fall out...so I was good! I then added the vanilla bean seeds and the extract until mixed through.
Those of you who know me, know I do cooking shows and sell Fantastic Kitchen Tools. Well, I have a few things still in boxes that I have yet to use. I hear people rave about the easy accent decorator all the time. I decided to give it a go. I used the largest star tip, loaded all the meringue into the tube and began making meringues. I piped them onto a cooking sheet lined with parchment paper. I piped a whole pan in less than a minute. The decorator made it extremely simple. You can also use a piping bag or ziplock bag.
This is right before baking. I almost forgot to take a pic, so that is why they are already in the oven. Don't they look great?
So they bake in the oven on a low temperature for 1 1/2 hours, then turn off the oven and let them set in there another 1 1/2 hours. I was home cleaning today, so no biggie.
I could hardly wait to try these. They look great, they smell grate...I'm impressed with myself at this point! Then I taste one....oh my. So good. Can't wait to share them with friends on Saturday. They keep for two weeks in an airtight container.
I cannot wait to try differnt variations. I am thinking of adding strawberry jam so they will be pink and have another flavor. I'll let you know what I decide when I show you all the goodies I make for my get together on Saturday. Want a yummy, light cookie? Give this a try!!!!
Double Vanilla Meringues
from Cooking Light Magazine
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise (I got a great deal on these at costco)
4 large egg whites (I used the boxed kind, as I already had it on hand)
1/4 teaspoon cream of tarter
1/2 cup grandulated sugar
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 225 degrees F.
Cover 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. (I used one large and two medium)
Place egg whites and cream of tarter in a large bowl, beat with a mixer at medium speed until soft peaks form. Increase speed to high, and gradually add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until stiff peaks form. Add vanilla seeds and extract, beat just until blended.
Spoon batter into a pastry bag fitted with a large star tip. Pipe 60 mounds onto prepared baking sheets. (You can use a ziplock bag, or accent decorator too)
Bake at 225 for 1 1/2 hours. Turn oven off, cool meringues in closed oven 1 1/2 hours or until dry. Carefully remove the meringues from the paper.
Makes 5 dozen.