I’m not big on desserts but make me something with meringue and I will gobble it up. We tend to serve lots of meringue based desserts at our dinner parties. It’s easy to make and you can find all the ingredients in your pantry – egg whites, sugar, vanilla, heavy cream and confectioner’s sugar. Sometimes we also add in cornstarch and vinegar depending on the recipe.
Growing up, I only knew meringues to be used in two desserts – lemon meringue pie and baked alaskas, which we almost never had. In my house, we were served fresh fruit after meals. Then I met Kevin. Let’s just say he has a separate stomach for desserts! 😉 I thank him for introducing me to all sorts of delicious sweets and treats that I otherwise would not have tried like Christmas trifle, pavlova, vanilla slice napoleons, stewed apple with victoria sponge drizzled with creme anglaise, eton mess and meringue roulade. Ah meringue roulade, how delicious you are!
So what is meringue roulade? It’s like a swiss roll, but the cake part is all meringue. Spread a layer of whipped cream, top with some fresh seasonal fruits (we made one last week with peaches, and one this morning with raspberries), and roll it up. Swirls of meringue, cream and fruit. Delicious! Here is the recipe Kevin uses.
5 egg whites
1 cup sugar
1 TSP cornstarch
1/2 TSP vanilla extract
1/2 TSP vinegar
1 cup heavy cream
Heat oven to 350 F. Separate egg whites from yolks. Pour egg whites into your standing mixer. Beat egg whites at high speed until it reaches stiff peaks. Lower speed and slowly add in sugar. Continue beating the egg mixture until it is glossy and you can no longer feel the grains of sugar between your fingers. (Fun tip. You can also check to see if it’s ready by turning over the meringue mixture above your head. If it’s ready, It won’t fall out. Try it out, It creates some fun in the kitchen!) Gently fold in cornstarch, vanilla extract and vinegar. Line a jelly roll pan (9×13) with parchment paper, place mixture in pan and spread evenly. Bake in oven for 15-20 minutes, depending on thickness. Cool meringue. Meanwhile, whip heavy cream (you can add sugar to sweeten the whipped cream). Flip over the meringue onto some parchment paper, spread the whip cream on top and top with seasonal fruits. With the help of the parchment paper, gently roll up the meringue. Dust confectioner’s sugar on top and you’re ready to serve. Sometimes we like to top with more cream and fruit.
Last summer, Kevin and I decided to embark on a new adventure and we packed our bags and headed to Ireland for a few months before we started this new chapter in our lives. It was lovely being away from the daily grind and spending time with family. From my personal experience, life in Ireland seems so calm and beautiful. We went for morning runs in the countryside (gorgeous!), afternoon drives along the coast (breathtaking!), light paddles along the shore, and enjoyed hot cuppas and homemade cakes throughout the day. (Irish friends and family are probably reading this thinking, what in the world is lisbeth talking about?! HAHA. I was on holiday! Life’s always a dream on holiday!) By the way, I had so much tea there it was insane! I usually drink 6 glasses of water and 1 cup of tea at home. In Ireland, I’d have 6 cups of tea and 1 glass of water! With a little bit of sugar and milk, how could you say no?
I remember one evening, Kevin’s brother organized a family dinner cruise in New Ross, Co. Wexford. Dinner cruise you say?! Why I’d love to go on a dinner cruise. I pictured a fancy dinner on a grand cruise ship. What fun! I think Kevin and his siblings were amused at how excited I was getting. They knew what a dinner cruise in Ireland was and it definitely wasn’t this elaborate yacht I was creating in my head. When we reached New Ross, they teased me and pointed to the right of the bridge at the Dunbrody Famine Ship, a tourist attraction, “That’s it there Liz, we’re here.” “No it’s not, I know what that is,” I said to them laughing. Then they pointed to the left of the bridge at a small barge bobbing up and down along the quay, “You’re right Liz, it’s just that there.” Laughing even harder I replied, “No it’s not! Where’s the ship? Are we late?” Then they began to laugh, “No Liz, really, we’re getting in that barge.”….THEY WERE SERIOUS! Imagine my surprise! So it wasn’t fancy pants like I was expecting, but we had a fantastic evening creating new memories. There were lots of laughs and the meal was delicious. It was on this cruise that I had my first slice of meringue roulade and I’ve been addicted to it ever since.
Try making this dessert for your next dinner party. All your guests will be impressed and your bellies will thank you!
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