Meringue is not difficult to make provided you follow one simple but very important rule. No egg yolk or any other oil must come into contact with the egg white. Make sure your bowl and whisk are scrupulously clean (you can even wipe out the bowl with a little white vinegar) and the egg yolk and egg white are properly separated with no traces of egg yolk in the white. If you do those two things and follow the straightforward recipe you will be making amazing meringues in no time.
Makes 6 giant meringues or 24 small meringues
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 40 Minutes
Cooling time: 3 hours
- 225ml egg whites (approximately 6 large eggs)
- ½ cup (330g) castor sugar
- 1 tablespoon (15g) corn flour
- 1½ teaspoons white vinegar
- Preheat oven to 150°C and line a baking tray with baking paper. Place the egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer and whisk on high speed until soft peaks form.Do not over beat.
- Add the castor sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, whisking until each addition is dissolved before adding more, the slower the sugar is added the better. (see tips below)
- Once all the sugar has been added, scrape down the sides of the bowl and whisk for a further 10–15 minutes or until the mixture is thick and glossy.
- Add the corn flour, followed by the vinegar, to the egg white mixture and whisk for 30 seconds or until all combined.
- Spoon tablespoons of meringue onto the baking tray and place in the oven. Reduce the oven temperature to 120°C and bake for 40 minutes. Switch off the oven and do not open the door. Allow to cool in the oven with the door closed until cold.
- Serve with whipped cream, lemon curd and fresh fruit.
- Baking is a science, and that includes making meringues. Always be sure to measure and weigh your ingredients carefully; including the egg whites as egg sizes can
- Fresh, room temperature eggs work best – when whisked they’ll become fluffy and voluminous. Cold eggs will not whisk up as well as room temperature eggs.
- Be patient when adding the sugar to the egg whites, do this gradually so that each tablespoon of sugar is dissolved before the next is added. Check this by rubbing a little of the mixture between your thumb and forefinger, it should not feel grainy.
- Take care not to over-whisk the meringue mixture – it’s ready when it’s thick, glossy, smooth and there are no more sugar granules.
If possible, avoid making meringue on humid days. Excess humidity can cause meringue to sink during or after baking.