Meringue — such a simple dish, based on the ingredients.
Meringue — such a complex, based on the sense of measure and taste.
Let’s try to deal with these contradictions. Wonderful culinary and longtime friend Gastronom.ru Natalya Skvortsova shares his knowledge of cooking tender, air meringues
The first time I have with meringue nothing worked: ready-made cakes stuck to their teeth or chewed like chewing gum.
Now I understand that I baked the meringues at too high a temperature and the sugar instantly melted, turning into a caramel gum.
But besides the right temperature, there are several other things, the knowledge of which allows you to achieve an excellent result.
They must be fresh. Break one egg on a saucer and see what happens to the protein.
If it is spread in a liquid puddle, then the egg has already been laid for several weeks and is not suitable for making meringue.
If the protein lies around the yolk with a solid elastic ring, then this is what you need.
It is from these proteins that the perfect meringue is obtained.
In addition to freshness eggs should be well cooled.
Because in cold eggs, the protein is separated much easier, and whipped faster.
The next important point: the right to separate the whites from the yolks.
Even one small drop of yolk in a bowl of proteins can ruin everything.
Therefore, it is better to separate each new egg over a separate bowl so that in case of failure, it was possible to replace the protein with the yolk that fell into it with another.
The bowl in which we whip the whites is well washed and wiped dry, so that no traces or fat remains.
For greater reliability, you can wipe the bowl with a slice of lemon.
We measure off sugar.
Better to take with small crystals.
For every protein you need 50 grams of sugar.
Now proceed to beating. Make it simpler and easier with a mixer. We start with small revolutions, gradually adding to the maximum.
For best results, a pinch of salt can be added at the beginning of the whipping process. As soon as we see that a characteristic trace remains from the whipped proteins, we begin to gradually add sugar.
After that, whip the whites well.
This may take about 10 minutes.
The mass should become fluffy, dense and, as confectioners say, when removing the mixer from the bowl should remain «solid peaks«.
Turn on the oven at 110 ° C. Cover the baking tray with baking paper and spoon the whipped whites with a spoon.
You can do this with the help of a pastry bag.
We bake. Do not open the oven for the first hour.
Meringue should dry well.
Baking time is very dependent on the size of your pastries.
This is usually from one to two hours.
Do not be scared. You can always easily check the readiness by taking the meringue out of the oven and tapping it with your finger.
Deaf rustling sound indicates its full readiness.
For cooking nut meringues add chopped hazelnuts or almonds to the whipped whites.
I usually do these proportions: 500 g of nuts, I take 4 proteins, an incomplete cup of sugar and 1 bag of vanilla sugar.
It is very beautiful to add multicolored syrups to the meringue.
This should be done at the end, when the whites are finally whipped.
Three squirrels are about a tablespoon of syrup.
Also I like chocolate meringue. Only chocolate should certainly be high in cocoa (not less than 75%). Pre-chocolate must be melted and cooled very well.
How many meringues were spoiled due to my constant rush! Even slightly lukewarm chocolate instantly kills all airiness and lightness of the meringue.
So take your time and cool to room temperature.
At 3 protein, I take 100 grams of chocolate, 100 grams of sugar (less because some sugar is already present in chocolate), 1 tbsp. a spoonful of starch (add for more crispness).
Cooking technology is the same.
Starch is added together with sugar, and chilled chocolate is poured in a thin stream when the whites are finally whipped. A tablespoon of a few stirring movements, not allowing the chocolate to fully mix with the whites, and spread the spoon on a baking sheet.
We bake a little differently: first, put the cakes in the oven preheated to 150 degrees, and after half an hour we subtract to 100 degrees and bake another hour and a half.
Readiness check is the same as that of regular meringues.
Comment from www.gastronom.ru: when whipping proteins, add a few grains of salt and a little lemon juice, or better citric acid.
These two ingredients will make the whipped mass stronger and more resistant. And in the case of citric acid and improve the taste of meringue
“I have four children and, of course, most of the time I spend in the kitchen. I perceive any information from the point of view of its application to cooking.
When I meet a new person, I look into his eyes and try to guess what he eats for breakfast and what his lunch consists of. Very often, according to eating habits, you can make a psychological portrait of a person. I do not have branded recipes.
I cook so many and varied that there is no need to repeat the same dish several times.
I like to experiment.
If something touches me in a dish, I take it as an idea as a basis and develop it.
I do not like the phrase «author’s cuisine.» All the basic culinary techniques invented before us.
You can only change something, customize for yourself, to your tastes. I can stand at the stove all day and get an incredible thrill from it.
I like to watch the soup gurgle in a saucepan and the clear broth overflows with amber bubbles. I love the smell of fried onions and garlic.
I like the warm softness of yeast dough and the flavor of cherry pie with cardamom.
If it were possible, I would live in the kitchen. ”