Sorry I haven’t written in a while. Once Thanksgiving hit, the rest of the holiday season was a blur. Now that Christmas is over, things have settled down and you’ll see more recipes from me.
I made lots of Christmas cookies this year and hands down, these cookies were my favorite! They were my first attempt at meringues and they were a huge success. They’re really easy to make if you time them right. I made them at 11pm the other night because they’re best if they sit in the oven all night after you cook them.
When you make these, definitely wait until the egg whites are at room temperature, as the recipe suggests. The recipe calls for superfine sugar. I didn’t have any and didn’t feel like running to the store, so I put some regular granulated sugar into my mini food processor and pulsed it until the sugar was very fine. It worked perfectly.
After I dipped the bottoms of these in chocolate, I put them right in the freezer, and kept them there until they were all eaten. I thought they were excellent ice-cold.
I could have eaten the whole batch of these myself. The meringue tops melt in your mouth and I made the chocolate with a kick of peppermint, which is a nice surprise when you pop one in your mouth.
These cookies can be served without the chocolate dip. They are delicious all on their own. I think the chocolate makes them a little more elegant, and they peppermint makes them perfect for the holidays.
Chocolate-Dipped Meringue Cookies
Adapted from recipe by Tyler Florence
4 large egg whites at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons superfine granulated sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract or to taste
1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil
Preheat oven to 225 degrees F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat egg whites on low-medium speed with the whisk attachment until the whites become foamy. Add the cream of tartar and turn speed up to medium, beating until just fluffy. Add the sugar gradually, so it incorporates into the whites slowly without collapsing them. Once all the sugar has been added, add the vanilla and increase the speed to high, whisking until the meringue is firm and glossy, about 5 to 7 minutes.
Place meringue mixture into a piping bag with a medium-sized nozzle attached. Pipe bite-sized “kiss”-shaped meringues onto the trays and place in the oven. Bake for 1 hour undisturbed then turn off heat and leave in the oven overnight to really dry out.
Melt chocolate over a double-boiler or in the microwave on medium power for 30 seconds. Add peppermint extract. If you find that your chocolate is too thick for dipping, you can add 1/2 teaspoon of vegetable oil to the chocolate. This will give it a smoother consistency which should make dipping easier. Holding each meringue by the peak dip the bases in chocolate so the bottom half of the meringue is coated. Let any excess chocolate drop off before placing on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper. Allow to set at room temperature – do not put in the fridge. Once set, store in an airtight container. (I deviated from the recipe here. I put them meringues in the freezer to cool, and only took them out to eat/serve them. I loved eating them cold.)
Yield: ~30 cookies (depending upon how big you make them)