Lots of people are apprehensive about making meringues, but this, dare I say, is an almost ‘fool-proof’ recipe. Better still, it needs practically no skill to make, because you just add the icing sugar in with the egg whites at the beginning, so you don’t have to worry about your ‘folding in’ technique. This meringue cooks faster and is baked at a higher temperature than ordinary Swiss meringue.
It is also tremendously versatile because it can be piped or spread into any shape you like: heart shapes, rectangles, squares, numbers e.g. 21, or letters, not to speak of various kinds of rosettes and twirls.
Cover a baking sheet with silicone paper (otherwise grease and flour the sheet very carefully). Draw out
Put the egg whites and all the icing sugar into a spotlessly clean bowl and whisk until the mixture forms stiff peaks; this can take 8–10 minutes in an electric mixer. You can whisk it by hand but it takes quite a long time, so if you have even a hand-held mixer it will speed up the operation. Divide the mixture between the 2 circles, spread evenly with a palette knife, making sure it’s not too thin at the edges.
Bake in a low oven 150°C/300°F/regulo 2 for 45 minutes or until the meringues will lift easily off the paper. Turn off the oven and allow them to cool in the oven—with the door slightly ajar —for about 20–30 minutes. (If you take the meringues out of the hot oven and put them down on a cold work top they sometimes crack.)
Put one of the meringue discs onto a serving plate. Pipe on the whipped cream (keep a little to decorate the top), cover with slices of kiwi fruit and put the second disc on top. Pipe 5 rosettes of cream onto the top, put a little piece of kiwi fruit on each and decorate with sprigs of fresh mint or lemon balm.
© 1989 Darina Allen. All rights reserved.