After making my Benedict sauce and one wrong batch, I was left with 4 eegs whites...the perfect amount for a meringue. So if like me you don't like wastage get the whisk out! This time I followed a Good Food recipe which included icing sugar which I have never used before whilst making it.
4 egg whites
115g caster sugar
115g icing sugar
Preheat the oven to fan 100C/ conventional 110C/gas 1⁄4. Line 2 baking sheets with Bake-O-Glide non-stick liner or parchment paper (meringue can stick on greaseproof paper and foil).
Tip the 4 large egg whites into a large clean mixing bowl (not plastic). Beat them on medium speed with an electric hand whisk until the mixture resembles a fluffy cloud and stands up in stiff peaks when the blades are lifted.
Now turn the speed up and start to add 115g caster sugar, a dessertspoonful at a time. Continue beating for 3-4 seconds between each addition. It’s important to add the sugar slowly at this stage as it helps prevent the meringue from weeping later. However, don’t over-beat. When ready, the mixture should be thick and glossy.
Sift one third of the 115g icing sugar over the mixture, then gently fold it in with a big metal spoon or rubber spatula. Continue to sift and fold in the remaining icing sugar a third at a time. Again, don’t over-mix. The mixture should now look smooth and billowy, almost like a snow drift.
Scoop up a heaped dessertspoonful of the mixture. Using another dessertspoon, ease it on to the baking sheet to make an oval shape (pic 3). Or just drop them in rough rounds, if you prefer.
At this stage I drizzled some food dye over the uncooked mix and dragged through a sewer to create a marble effect.
Bake for 1 1⁄2-1 3⁄4 hours in a fan oven, 1 1⁄4 hours in a conventional or gas oven, until the meringues sound crisp when tapped underneath and are a pale coffee colour.
Leave to cool on the trays or a cooling rack. (The meringues will now keep in an airtight tin for up to 2 weeks, or frozen for a month.)
I didn't have any cream in the fridge to make a traditional Eton Mess, but I did have some natural yogurt so I thought I'd try that instead and it worked a treat! In fact I may even prefer it to whipped cream as it was less rich.