Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Peppermint Meringues with Chocolate Filling

This is a recipe from Martha Stewart

Peppermint Meringues with Chocolate Filling

To create the meringues, use a new small paintbrush to brush two or three evenly spaced stripes of gel-paste food coloring onto the length of the inside of a pastry bag fitted with an open-star tip. Fill the bag with meringue, and pipe star shapes onto your parchment-lined baking sheet. Each time you refill the bag with meringue, paint new stripes inside.


Makes about 5 dozen

3 large egg whites
3/4 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
Red gel paste food coloring
1 cup heavy cream
6 ounces good-quality semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped

1. Preheat oven to 175 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper; secure corners with a dab of meringue underneath. Fit pastry bag with a small open-star tip. Set aside. 

2. Make meringues; Put egg whites and sugar in the heatproof bowl of an electric mixer. Set bowl over a pan of simmering water, and stir gently until the sugar has disolved and mixture is warm to the touch, 2-3 minutes.

3. Transfer bowl to an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. mix on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form. Mix in peppermint extract. (Don't forget this ingredient, ask me how I know.)

4. Using a new small paintbrush, paint 2 or 3 stripes of red food coloring inside the pastry bag. Fill bag with 1-2 cups of meringue. Pipe small (3/4 inch high) star shapes onto prepared baking sheets. Refill bag as necessary, adding food coloring each time (not as easy as they make it sound.)

5. Bake cookies until crisp, but not brown, about 1 hour 40 minutes. Let cool completely on sheets on wire racks. (Try not to eat them all.)

6. Meanwhile, make ganache: Heat cream in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until just simmering. Pour over chocolate in a small bowl. Let stand 5 minutes. Let ganache cool at room temperature, stirring every 5-10 minutes until thick enough to hold it's shape, about 45 minutes. (If ganache sets before using, reheat in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water; repeat cooling process.) (My ganache never did thicken at room temperature, I had to stick it in the fridge for several hours.)

7. Fill a pastry bag fitted with a small plain round tip with ganache. Pipe a small amount onto the bottom of 1 meringue. Sandwich with another. Repeat with remaining ganache and meringues. transfer to wire racks; let set 30 minutes. Cookies can be stored in air-tight containers at room temperature for up to 2 days. 

One more thing, when I went to pipe the ganache onto the meringue, it was still fairly thin and the cookies slid around a bit, make sure you dry them upside down on your wire rack so they balance as they set. I was pleasantly surprised that the ganache solidified quite nicely. Oh, yeah, and just one more thing.... I wound up making a triple batch of these for my cookie exchange and tripled the ganache as well...... I have waaaaaay too much ganache now. One batch of ganache would probably have been enough. Anyone have any suggestions what to do with all this leftover chocolate????

1 comment:

  1. ...make a cheesecake and cover it with the left over ganache. A little goes a long ways :)
    p.s.- looks delicious!