The weekends here lately have been so gorgeous. Clear, sunny skies, trees are blossoming and everyone seems to be out and about enjoying the warm change. Our kids spent the majority of the weekend in the pool and by the time their heads hit the pillow at night they are sleeping heavily. Which made this morning just even harder with the start of daylight savings. We had to drag the younger two out of bed to get to school on time and the older two weren’t happy they didn’t get as much reading time. They are always up early and reading.
I’m sure it won’t take long at all to adjust and it makes me happy to think we have a long stretch ahead of us of warm weather.
Over the weekend I made a simple meringue dessert. Meringues are such a good dessert idea to keep filed away as they require just 3 basic ingredients – eggs, caster sugar and vanilla extract. Then you can add to that base, if you want, by folding through nuts, shredded coconut or grated dark chocolate.
For these meringues I folded through some finely chopped pistachios which looked so pretty. I figured I may as well go with the flavours of the Middle East and add a splash of rosewater to the whipped cream. I only put in one dessert spoon of sugar into the cream as the raspberries were so sweet (I am always astounded at how berries here are just sweeter and cheaper then what I’m used to). Fruit that is a little tart always works best with meringues and pavlovas but these raspberries were too hard to resist. A good scattering of pomegranate seeds would have made this perfect.
It was a simple idea and resulted in a beautiful dessert. Now I can’t stop thinking about making a tagine this week.
pistachio meringues with rosewater cream
2 egg whites
1/2 cup caster sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 tablespoons finely chopped pistachios, plus a little extra for sprinkling
2 tablespoons caster sugar
1 – 2 teaspoons rosewater
raspberries or strawberries
finely chopped pistachios
Preheat the oven to 150 degrees C (300 degrees F). Line a baking tray with baking paper.
Beat the egg whites in a mixer until stiff peaks form. Keep the mixer going and gradually start adding the sugar, one spoonful at a time. Add the vanilla extract and continue to beat until the mixture is glossy and stiff. Gently fold through the chopped pistachios. Just do about 3 folds with a spatula so the mixture is streaked with the nuts. You don’t want them completely mixed in. Dollop 6 meringues onto the baking tray and sprinkle over the extra chopped pistachios.
Bake for 45 minutes then turn the oven off but leave the door slightly ajar and leave the meringues to cool completely.
Whisk the cream until it just starts to thicken. Add the sugar and rosewater and continue to whisk until soft peaks just start to form. Taste and add extra rosewater if need be. I was reserved in how much I used as I just wanted a hint of rosewater.
To serve, place a meringue on each plate and top with a good dollop of the rosewater cream. Scatter over some raspberries or strawberries and if you can, some pomegranate seeds. Then sprinkle over some chopped pistachios.
This is also a good dessert to feed if you have a big gathering. Mound up the meringues on a big platter then everyone can help themselves to the bowl of cream, fruit and extra pistachios.