A kind of Eton mess
Saturday 02 August 2008
I'm inspired by the giant meringues in the window of Ottolenghi in Islington – they're striking, marbled examples and I sometimes use them instead of making my own.
For the meringue
3 egg whites
100g caster sugar
1tsp white wine vinegar
4 balls of vanilla ice cream
300-350g mixed berries (see Real Food, page 55)
Pre-heat the oven to 120C/gas mark 1. In a mixing machine with a whisk attachment, or by hand (though this will take a while), whisk the egg whites until stiff. Add the caster sugar and continue whisking until the mixture is really stiff and shiny. Add the cornflour and vinegar and whisk again for about 30 seconds. Spoon the mixture on to a clean baking tray, lined with silicone or greaseproof paper, into 4 round domes, making an indentation with the back of the spoon in the middle of each. Alternatively, make one big meringue. Cook in the oven for 1 hours so it's crisp on the outside and soft in the middle, but don't let the outside colour – you want it white. You may need to cook a little longer depending on your oven. Remove from the oven; cool. Meanwhile, blend about 100g red berries to a smooth purée in a liquidiser. To serve, hollow out the meringues by carefully pushing the centre in with the back of a spoon to make room for the ice cream. Fill the cavity with a ball of ice cream, scatter over the berries and drizzle with a little sauce.
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