It’s the Queens Jubilee! And yet, after getting a few weeks of summer, the weather has decided to return to gloomy downpours again. But oh well, we’re used to it! So I thought, what better to bake on this jubilee than a summer dessert to battle against the wet weather and bring a bit of celebration into the house. The streets around my area are completely deserted as everyone either stays in to watch the events on television or taken to the River Thames to watch the Queen in her pageant boat. Strawberries/Raspberries and Cream are a very popular summer combination in England and this recipe combines these, wrapping it all up between two meringue shells. These meringues are perfect; crumbly on the outside, sweet and chewy on the inside. The addition of mascarpone to the double cream makes the filling sweet but not overpowering or rich and allows the tart raspberries to come through. These are perfect to make ahead as it gives the filling a chance to firm up a little before you assemble them. For me, I had quite a lot of filling left over so just served some on the side as well! The recipe states that you should use pink food colouring but I used red and the meringues turned out perfect. However if you don’t have food colouring on hand, I really wouldn’t be too bothered as it only adds a very faint colouring.
Ingredients – Makes 9 filled Meringues (I made 7)
Recipe from BBC GoodFood
- 4 Egg whites
- pink or red food colouring
- 200g caster sugar
- 250g mascarpone
- 284ml double cream
- 1 tbsp icing sugar
- couple of handfuls of fresh or frozen (thawed) raspberries (can use mixed berries or strawberries)
Heat the oven to 140C/fan 120C. Line two baking sheets with baking parchment. Whisk the egg whites and a generous spoonful of pink colouring as it will go very pale as the mix whisks (if you are using red colouring, then use the end of a spoon to dip into the colouring, use this much) whisk with an electric hand whisk or mixer, until stiff. Continue whisking your egg whites as you sprinkle in the sugar, a tablespoon at a time, then continue whisking until the mixture becomes thick and glossy, and stiff peaks form as the whisks are removed from the mixture.
Using two tablespoons, make 18 large ‘quenelle’ shapes, spaced well apart on the baking sheets. (I don’t personally think this is necessary, if you don’t know how to make quenelles then just spoon on the meringues) Bake for about 1 1⁄2 hrs (check at 1 hours 15 minutes) until they are crisp and will peel easily from the lining. Leave to cool in the oven for 30 mins with the door slightly ajar. They will keep in an airtight tin for up to a week.
Beat the mascarpone until smooth and fluffy. Pour in the cream, add the sugar and whisk to soft peaks. Cut up some of your raspberries so that they add colour to your mix but leave some whole for appearance. Very gently stir in the fruit so it is only just combined into the cream. Just before serving, sandwich the meringues together with fruit cream. Pile onto a plate and eat the day they are made. Ta da you’re done!