Sunday, January 22, 2017

Rose Meringue Cookies


Rose meringue cookies are a gorgeous spin off of the traditional meringue cookies - with a little bit of food coloring, a piping bag and tip, you can transform a traditional meringue kiss into a delicate and airy rose. These cookies would make a delightful addition to any tea party, or a light dessert after a heavy meal.

If you haven't had a meringue cookie before, the flavor is similar to a marshmallow. The cookie is dry and airy and becomes sticky and sweet as you chew it. They're best served with tea or coffee. You can bet I'll be making these cookies the next time I have a tea party planned. If you are going to attempt this recipe, make sure you read carefully through all of my tips below and read the recipe a few times. Though the recipe has minimal steps and is fairly easy, meringues can be finicky cookies and you wouldn't want to be disappointed.



Tips-

  • Make sure your mixing bowl and whisk attachment are very clean and grease-free. This can be ensured by washing them with vinegar.
  • Make sure to add in the sugar slowly, tablespoon by tablespoon, so the egg whites don't fall flat.
  • I thought that 3/4 cups sugar was too sweet for me, so I will be using a little less sugar the next time I make this recipe. Decide at your discretion.
  • The temperature and baking time varies greatly from recipe to recipe but I found that the lower the temperature of the oven and the longer baking time resulted in a lighter cookie with minimal discoloration.
  • Bake the cookies at night so you can leave the cookies in the oven overnight. This will allow them to fully dry out through the center, resulting in a light, airy, and crunchy cookie. It's also great because that means these cookies can be made days in advance!
  • Chocolate is optional but S thought they added great flavor to the cookies (he may be biased since he is a chocoholic).
  • Don't attempt to make the cookies if the humidity is very high. They will not dry out.
  • Store the cookies at room temperature in an air tight container (but leaving them open in a bowl also worked just fine for me, for over three days).


Rose Meringue Cookies
(Makes 2 dozen)

3 egg whites, room temperature
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
2/3 - 3/4 cups sugar, to taste
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup melting chocolate (optional)
red or pink gel food coloring
white nonpareils sprinkles
disposable piping bag
1M Wilton piping tip

Whisk room temperature egg whites on low - medium speed in a grease-free mixing bowl. Add in cream of tartar and slowly increase the speed till you reach med-high and continue to whisk for 3-4 minutes until soft, foamy peaks are achieved. This stage will look similar to a bubble bath and the egg whites will be able to slightly maintain some sort of shape. While continuously whisking at med-high speed, gradually add in the sugar, tablespoon by tablespoon. Scrape the bowl occasionally.

Once all of the sugar is incorporated, whisk the mixture on high for 3-4 additional minutes or until stiff, glossy peaks are achieved and all the sugar is melted. To check for doneness, rub a little bit of the mixture between your fingers to feel for sugar granules. If it still feels grainy, continue to whisk until you feel that it is smooth.

Preheat the oven to 225ºF. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Use a spatula to fold in salt, vanilla extract, and food coloring until the desired color is achieved. Prepare a piping bag with the 1M tip. Turn the bag inside out and paint 3 or 4 streaks of food dye with a toothpick vertically across the bag. This optional step will give your roses a more realistic colorful look. Fill the bag with the meringue mixture and pipe roses on the parchment paper. Start in the center and pipe a circle going out. Sprinkle them with nonpareils. Bake for 1 hour and 30 minutes or until dry to the touch. Turn the oven off and leave the cookies in the warm oven overnight.

Melt chocolate chips or wafers in the microwave at 30 second intervals until melted. Let it cool down slightly before dipping the cookies in. Set the dipped cookies on parchment paper to dry. Serve and enjoy!

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