If you like to make your own custard at this time of year to accompany the Christmas pudding then you may have quite a few leftover egg whites. If I’m not using the egg whites straight away then I pop them in a ziplock bag, label how many egg whites are inside and then freeze. When I’m ready to use them I just defrost them in the fridge overnight and then in the morning I’ll leave the bag on the bench for them to come to room temperature.
A pavlova will always feed a crowd but you only need one egg white to make a small batch of meringues. According to Stephanie Alexander the quantities for meringue is 60g caster sugar to each egg white so you can reduce or increase the quantities below.
The swirl of chocolate is a little bit fancy and quite delicious. Add roughly 20g of dark chocolate per egg white. To serve, top with whipped cream sweetened with a little caster sugar and a good handful of fresh raspberries.
Make sure the beater and bowl are completely clean and completely dry. Eggs must be at room temperature and be sure there is no egg yolk in the whites. I like to tip the separated egg white into a little bowl, check for any yolk and then tip into the mixing bowl.
chocolate swirled meringues
(basic meringue recipe adapted from Stephanie Alexander’s ‘The Cooks Companion’)
4 egg whites (at room temperature)
240g caster sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla
80g good quality dark chocolate, melted and cooled
Preheat oven to 150 degrees C and line a baking tray with baking paper.
Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Little by little add the sugar as you continue to beat. Beat in the vanilla and keep beating until all the sugar has dissolved. To test sugar has dissolved rub some of the meringue between 2 fingers – if you feel gritty sugar then keep beating.
Fold in the melted and cooled chocolate for a lovely marbled look. Place spoonfuls of meringue on the baking tray and bake for 45 minutes. Turn oven off and leave door slightly open and allow to cool completely.
Store in an airtight container.
Serve with chantilly cream and fresh raspberries.