Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Lavender & Rose Meringues

I wasn't sure if I was going to do a specific Valentine's Day post this year as we don't really put much effort into celebrating it. We used to buy cards and little presents but we haven't done that for a couple of years now. I did put together a few ideas for Valentine's baking from my archives last week though because I know that a lot of people like to make the effort. I'm not even cooking a special meal tomorrow as we're both going to be working late. I made a big casserole tonight that can be reheated, we have chocolate and ginger torte left over from my birthday and now we have these meringues that we can nibble on as well. My boyfriend has the day off on Sunday which is quite rare for him so I'm going to buy a joint of meat to roast so we'll make the effort then instead. I haven't cooked a roast dinner yet this year so it will be a nice treat for both us.


I made these a couple of weeks ago as a little experiment to try out some Star Kay White lavender and rose extracts that I bought from Lakeland. My boyfriend said he preferred the lavender ones but I couldn't decide so I made both again. First time round I made quite big meringues but this time I made them smaller and a bit daintier as the floral extracts were a bit too overpowering in a large meringue but are just right for a bitesize one. I added a little red food colouring to the rose meringues and a little blue colouring to the lavender although you don't have to. It just makes it easier to tell them apart. The basic meringue recipe is from Nigella Lawson's How To Cook.

Ingredients - makes about 25-30 small meringues

2 egg whites
120g caster sugar
1/4 tsp rose extract - not rosewater
1/4 tsp lavender extract
optional -  red and blue food colours I used Sugar Flair colours in Christmas Red and Ice Blue

  1. Preheat the oven to 140C and line a baking tray with non-stick parchment or a silicone baking tray liner
  2. Whisk the egg whites to stiff peaks in a spotlessly clean mixing bowl, don't use a plastic bowl as they always retain a tiny bit of grease. 
  3. Next whisk in half of the sugar until the mixture is smooth and glossy and then use a metal spoon to fold in the rest of the sugar.
  4. Spoon half of the meringue into another bowl and add the rose extract with a tiny bit of red food colouring with a cocktail stick and stir gently with a spoon to combine. Add the lavender extract and a tiny bit of blue colouring to the remaining meringue and mix. So you now have a bowl of pink rose flavoured meringue and a bowl of blue lavender flavoured meringue or leave the meringues uncoloured if you prefer. Your kitchen will smell lovely whilst making these. 
  5. Use a teaspoon to drop small amounts of meringue onto the baking tray, leave a little gap between each one as they will spread in the oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes until the meringues are firm to the touch. Turn off the oven and open the door a little and leave the meringues to cool in the oven otherwise they will crack. 

These meringues are crisp on the outside and chewy in the middle, just as they should be. Even after making these a second time I still can't decide which flavour I prefer. Which would you go for, lavender or rose?

I'm entering these into Calendar Cakes run by Rachel and Laura and also into Made With Love Mondays


4 comments:

  1. Ooh you can't beat a gooey meringue and the flavours sound intrigueing! Think I'd probably opt for Rose:-)

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  2. I love how simple these are to make, Jen. And I think I'm with Camilla - I'd enjoy the rose flavored meringues the most... So cute and thank you so much for sharing!

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  3. I love meringue, as far as I have gone with the flavour is toffee or lemon, must experiment more.

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