As happy as I am with how these turned out it was actually a salvage operation. I was following a recipe that was meant to produce perfectly crispy white meringues but after 20 mins of beating my mixture was refusing to form soft peaks. When I piped the meringues out they spread a little more than they should have and lost their cute little peaks. What to do? Cover them in chocolate of course.
Toasted almonds have become a recent favourite of mine, they add so much texture as well as their lovely toasty warmth. The only problem is that I forget to put them on stuff! I bought a packet the other day to keep in my cupboard as a reminder. Watching my meringues flatten in the oven I had the idea of blanketing them in chocolate and sprankling them with toasted almonds.
They actually got little feet and resembled macarons by the time they finished cooking. I don’t know what I did wrong to alter the consistency of the meringues but in the recipe I wrote down exactly what I did, so hopefully if you want your meringues to be flat on top that’s what will happen. Next time I will use 70% dark chocolate because the one I used was a bit too sweet for my taste.
You could do so many toppings for these little morsels. An almond praline would be super tasty and if you’re a fan of dried fruit I think dried cranberries would go nicely with white chocolate. These would make cute little presents or could be part of a morning tea selection.
Chocolate and Almond Meringues
3 large egg whites
3/4 cup caster sugar
3/4 tsp lemon juice
150g dark chocolate
3/4 cup flaked almonds
Heat oven to 80 C, line a large baking tray with baking paper.
Combine the egg whites and sugar in a heat proof bowl and place over a saucepan filled with simmering water (make sure the water doesn’t touch the bowl).
Stir constantly with a whisk until the mixture reaches 60-65 C when checked with a thermometer, or when you rub it with your fingers you can’t feel any granules of sugar and the mixture feels quite hot.
Remove the bowl from the heat, add lemon juice and use a hand mixer to whip it to soft peaks (or, like me, until you’re pretty sure soft peaks aren’t going to happen).
Place meringue in a piping bag and pipe out bite sized meringues onto the lined baking tray.
Bake on the lowest shelf in the oven for 50-60 mins.
At this time, turn off the oven and leave the meringues in there with the door ajar until the oven cools completely (even overnight).
Place the meringues on a wire rack with baking paper underneath it.
Melt chocolate gently in the microwave, set aside to cool until it is a good drizzling consistency.
Place the flaked almonds in a dry saucepan on medium heat, stirring until light brown then place on a piece of paper towel to cool.
Drizzle the melted chocolate over the meringues (the baking paper will catch any drips) and sprinkle them with the toasted almonds.
Place in the fridge to set.