I love making meringue. Ever since Lola came into my life, it’s been easier than ever. But even with my hand mixer (better known as “He Who Must Not Be Named“), it’s pretty simple. And fast. I haven’t made them in years, though. I figured it was time. And now that I have a new oven… Well, it doesn’t matter the reason. There’s never a bad reason for cookies.
So yeah, I decided to do something I hadn’t done in a while: meringues.
And meringues- or meringue in general- is extremely easy to make, if you have a mixer. Even a not-so-strong mixer can handle making meringue. I do recommend a stand mixer, however. Mainly because you can walk away & just let the mixer do its thing, without standing there with your arm feeling like it might fall off. I will say, though, that meringue has been made in France & Switzerland since before 1692, and they didn’t have stand (or hand) mixers. So it’s definitely possible… it just isn’t as easy.
But its still easier than mixing cheesecake by hand. Did I ever tell you about the time I broke a mixer on cheesecake batter? It was cray x 100.
Okay, anyway. Back to the subject at hand. Yep. These are meringues. However… not just any meringues:
Meringue cookies are actually quite simple. Even more simple than your average chocolate chip cookie, really. They require 3 ingredients, the mixing is 1-2-3 and the baking time isn’t very important to get perfect since they need to be “dried” in the oven anyway. The roughest part is the mixing- or the creation of the foamy egg whites (or worse yet, the notorious “stiff peaks”). And the chocolate sauce is really easy too, I swear.
S’MORES MERINGUE COOKIES
- 3 large egg whites
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract plus another 1/2 teaspoon (for the chocolate sauce)
- 3/4 cup superfine sugar
- 3 tablespoons heavy cream
- 4 ounces bittersweet baking chocolate, chopped
- 3-4 graham crackers, crushed
- Preheat your oven to 200° degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Using an electric mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on low-medium speed until foamy. Add the cream of tartar and extract and continue beating until mixture holds soft peaks. Add the sugar, a little at a time, and continue to beat until the meringue holds very stiff peaks.
- Transfer the meringue to a pastry bag, which has been fitted with either a 1/2 or 1 inch plain/star tip (or you can simply drop the cookies using two spoons if you’re a plain Jane). If you are piping them, pipe the cookies onto the paper in a size that would make sense- not too large, not too small. They should be round, with a little peak on top.
- Bake the meringues for about an hour and a half, possibly a little longer, rotating the baking sheet from front to back to ensure even baking. The meringues are done when they are pale in color and fairly crisp. Turn off the oven, open the door a crack and leave the meringues in the oven to finish drying overnight.
- Make the chocolate sauce by heating up the heavy cream until it’s just hot- when bubbles form on the sides. Pour it over the chocolate in a heatproof bowl, and stir until it’s combined. Add the vanilla & stir. Allow it to cool so it’s not scalding hot.
- Dip the bottoms of the meringue into the chocolate, then sprinkle with graham cracker crumbs. (You WILL have chocolate sauce leftover, keep in in a jar in the fridge- it’s great re-melted in the microwave and spooned over ice cream!)
Perfect snow day dessert!
And you can do whatever you want with them. You can leave the graham cracker off, and just dip them in chocolate. You can have them plain. You can add a few drops of food coloring. You can pipe them into shapes. You can add some cocoa powder to them as they mix (with the sugar) or you can use any kind of extract or flavoring you want. The only thing I’d avoid is flavoring oil– meringue is a delicate balance, and the slightest change like a fat or oil can throw it off.
You can also pipe them into little bowl shapes, like mini-pavlovas, and fill them with chocolate shavings & whipped cream, fresh fruits or jams/preserves once they’re ready. There are so many possibilities for using meringues!
Psssst… Want more s’mores-y lovin’? Right this way: