Peach Melba meringue nests

Peach Melba meringue nests. Photograph: Harry Weir

Peach Melba meringue nests. Photograph: Harry Weir

Sat, Jul 17, 2021, 05:55

   
  • Serves: 6
  • Cooking Time: 180 mins
  • Course: Dessert
  • Cuisine: Fusion

Ingredients

  • FOR THE MERINGUE NESTS:
  • 4 egg whites
  • Pinch of fine salt
  • 220g caster sugar
  • 1tsp white wine vinegar
  • 2tsp cornflour
  • FOR THE CREAM FILLING:
  • 250ml cream
  • 2tbs icing sugar
  • 1tsp vanilla extract or ½ vanilla pod, seeds scraped
  • 125g raspberries
  • FOR THE TOPPING:
  • 3 ripe peaches
  • 12 raspberries

Method

FOR THE MERINGUE NESTS

1 Preheat the oven to 130 degrees (110 degrees fan). Line a baking tray with a sheet of parchment paper.

2 Put the egg whites and salt in a spotlessly clean stand mixer bowl fitted with a whisk attachment and begin to whisk the egg whites on a slow speed until they become frothy. Alternatively, use an electric whisk.

3 Gradually add one tablespoon of the sugar at a time, and continue to whisk until thick, very stiff and voluminous. This will take about 10 minutes.

4 Test the meringue by rubbing a little between your fingers. If you can’t feel any granules of sugar, it’s ready.

5 Add the white wine vinegar and sift in the cornflour, and gently fold in until well combined.

6 Put the meringue in a piping bag fitted with a large star nozzle, or alternatively, use a zip-lock bag.

7 Pipe a disc of meringue about 6-7cm in diameter, then pipe another circle on top of the disc to make a nest shape. Continue with the remaining meringue to make six nests in total.

8 Bake the meringues in the preheated oven for 10 minutes, then reduce the heat to 110 (90 fan) and continue to bake for one hour. Turn off the oven and leave to cool in the oven for another two hours.

FOR THE CREAM FILLING

1 Whisk the cream with the icing sugar and the vanilla to soft peaks in a large bowl.

2 In a separate bowl, crush the raspberries with a fork, and gently fold through the cream to make a ripple effect.

FOR THE TOPPING

1 Slice the peaches in half and remove the stone. Slice each half into thin slices.

2 To assemble, spoon some of the cream into each meringue nest. Then, starting from the outside of the nest, arrange the peach slices in a circle, with the flat cut side facing inwards, and the peaches slightly overlapping. Repeat to make another circle and continue until you have decorated all of the nests.

3 Place a raspberry or two on top of each meringue nest and serve.