Thursday, December 16, 2010

Great Grandma's Meringues

For a cookie that involves very few ingredients and seems relatively simple, meringues are temperamental little devils. When I mentioned to my mother that I wanted to attempt good old Jessie Bernice's meringues, I was cautioned to be sure and check the weather first. What? Huh? Seriously? Apparently making meringues on a humid day will cause them to become chewy and/or flat--regardless, it ruins them. So, I heeded her warning and awaited a crisp, dry day to commence meringue madness.

After successfully making 2 batches, I must say I'm kind of obsessed with them at the moment. They're awesome because you can make them almost any flavor and you can dye them fun colors! Since all of my Christmas decor is pink and green, obviously I made pink and green meringues. The pink ones are almond flavored and the green ones are mint--perfect for an after dinner treat!

Great-Grandma's Meringues
4 - Egg Whites
1 Cup - Sugar
1/2 Teaspoon - Cream of Tartar
1/2 Teaspoon Flavoring
Several Drops of Food Coloring (technically this is optional, but in my kitchen, fun colors are a must!)

- Preheat oven to 175°F
- Beat eggs 'til frothy
- Add Cream of Tartar
- Beat 'til soft peaks form
- Slooooooooowly add sugar while continuing to beat the egg whites (p.s. I heart my Kitchen Aid stand mixer a lot at times like this)
- Add in flavoring and color and beat 'til incorporated
- Using a pastry bag or a spoon, dollop mixture onto parchment-covered cookie sheets
- Bake for 1 Hour
- Turn oven off and allow meringues to cool IN THE OVEN for 1 Hour

Under no circumstances open the oven door during the 2 hours that the meringues are baking/cooling.

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