One night, I was craving to eat meringue. After seeing some of it hanging in a sari-sari store’s window, I bought 1 pack enough to satisfy my craving. 😉 This kind of meringue that can be found at sari-sari stores has a different taste than the meringue that can be bought from Dulcinea. Well, I already tasted it and got disappointed with the taste. Maybe it’s kinda “sosyal” to buy and eat Dulcinea’s meringue but I won’t spend that much to buy something that would only make me feel blue.
The meringue that you’ve known for so many years is crunchier, crispier, tastier and sweeter than Dulcinea’s meringue. Aside from that, it is cheaper of course! 😉 I can’t remember how much per pack of meringue back then, but it is being sold nowadays for P12 per pack (12 pieces). And if you would taste the meringue from other provinces, you would love it too! 🙂
Here is a basic recipe for making meringue:
Basic Meringue Recipe:
Step 1: Place egg whites in a glass bowl and allow to stand for 15-20 minutes, then whisk using an electric mixer on a low speed.
Step 2: Increase mixer speed as eggs begin to froth. Increase speed to maximum. The egg whites will become thick and creamy.
Step 3: Continue whisking until egg white forms stiff peaks.
Step 4: Add a third of the sugar while continually whisking. Repeat until all the sugar is added.
Step 5: Fold in cornflour, vinegar and vanilla essence.
Step 6: Use as required. For a pavlova, spoon mixture on a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper. Spread out to form a 23cm round. Make sure there is a substantial hollow in the centre for the filling. Alternatively, place mixture in a piping bag and pipe swirls using a suitably-sized star nozzle to create large or small bite-sized meringues.
Step 7: Cook meringue at 130ºC for 1 ¼-1 ½ hours, until meringue is firm and crisp on the outside. Cool meringue thoroughly before removing from paper. Fill as desired.
For bite-sized meringues, make a quantity of Basic meringue. Pipe 30 swirls and bake at 130ºC for 35-40 minutes. Cool completely, then drizzle with a little melted chocolate (about 75g for this quantity).
The secret to making a great meringue is to get maximum volume when whisking egg whites. Here are a few simple tips:
- Separate the eggs carefully. Make sure there’s no egg yolk in the egg whites. Egg yolks need not be wasted – you can use them for glazing baked items or for an omelette or scrambled eggs.
- Use eggs which are a few days old as they will whisk better than egg whites from fresh eggs. This is because some of the water in the egg white has evaporated.
- Make sure the beaters you use and the bowl you place the eggs in are grease-free as this will affect the volume you create with your egg whites.
- Use a glass or china bowl, not an aluminium or plastic one.
- Always whisk egg whites at room temperature. If the eggs have been kept in the fridge,once the yolk and white have been separated, allow themto stand for 15-20 minutes.
- Use a metal spoon to fold in cornflour, vanilla essence and vinegar.
Once cooled, store meringues in an airtight container. They should keep fresh and moist for up to 2 weeks. Meringues freeze well unfilled and can
be stored in the freezer for up to 2 months. Make sure
the container you use is free from strong smells.
How to fill a piping bag:
Place the piping bag with the nozzle pointing down in a tall glass small enough to tuck back the piping bag edge. This allows you to be hands-free to fill the bag easily. Don’t fill the bag more than three-quarters full
to avoid any spillage.