Meringue Snowballs

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These meringue snowballs are crunchy and sweet, not to mention appropriate for the holiday season.  They’re great if you have a sweet tooth, and they’re even naturally gluten free, so no modifications are necessary.

 

Meringue Snowballs
From Dorie’s Cookies by Dorie Greenspan, courtesy of Vogue

Yield: 24 cookies

  • 3/4 cup + 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
  • 3 large egg whites, at room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • Pinch of fine sea salt (optional)

 

  1. Preheat oven to 250ºF.  Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Sift 1 tablespoon granulated sugar and confectioners’ sugar through a fine-mesh sieve into a small bowl.  Set aside.
  3. With a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, beat egg whites, cream of tartar, and salt (if using) at medium-high speed for about 3 minutes, until the whites form soft peaks.
  4. Add 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time.  It will take about 5 minutes but will be worth your patience.
  5. Beat for another 2 minutes.  You will have stiff and glossy peaks.
  6. With a flexible spatula, fold in the sifted sugars.
  7. Using a cookie scoop or serving spoon, shape the meringue into round mounds on the baking sheets.  Each one will be about 1 1/2 – 2 tablespoons.  You want them to be piled high with nice round tops so they resemble snowballs.  Leave 2 inches between meringues.
  8. Bake for 1 hour 15 minutes without opening the oven.  The snowballs will puff and crack but stay light in color.  (Pale beige is fine.)
  9. Turn off oven and prop open door with the handle of a wooden spoon.  Leave for at least 2 hours so the meringues finish baking and dry out.  (If you’re short on time, 1 1/2 hours is acceptable, although the larger meringues might still be a little chewy in the center.)
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Coco Rochers

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These French cookies are like American macaroons – chewy mounds of coconut held together by egg white and sugar.  They’re very fast to make and delicious to eat.  Plus you don’t have to change anything to make them gluten free.

Coco Rochers
From Dorie Greenspan’s Baking Chez Moi

Yield: 30 cookies

  • 2 1/2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 4 egg whites
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  1. Put coconut, egg whites, and sugar in a medium saucepan.  Stir to mix well.
  2. Place saucepan over medium-low heat heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture is hot to the touch, about 7-10 minutes.  (Heat the ingredients without browning them.)
  3. Scrape dough into a heatproof bowl and stir in vanilla.
  4. Press plastic wrap against the surface and chill for several hours; overnight is best.  It can be refrigerated up to 5 days.  (If you’re impatient like me, you can divide the dough across a couple of shallow bowls to cool it faster.)
  5. Preheat oven to 300ºF.
  6. Use an insulated baking sheet or stack two baking sheets one on top of the other.  (This prevents the bottoms from burning before the tops are done baking.)  Line the top sheet with parchment paper.
  7. Scoop out 2-teaspoon chunks of dough and press the mixture into balls between the palms of your hands.  If you have a small cookie scoop, you can use that too.
  8. Place mounds on the baking sheet, leaving 1/2 inch between them.
  9. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until they are lightly golden and feel slightly firm to the touch.
  10. Transfer baking sheet to a rack and let cookies cool on the sheet.

Chocolate-Dipped Meringues

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These meringues are simple to make and don’t require any modifications to be gluten free!  You can eat them with or without the chocolate coating, depending on how much you like chocolate.

Original Recipe

Chocolate-Dipped Meringues
From Real Simple

Yield: 24 meringues

  • 2 egg whites, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pinch cream of tartar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled to room temperature

 

  1. Preheat oven to 200° F.
  2. Using a mixer, beat the egg whites with the vanilla, espresso powder (if using), salt, and cream of tartar on medium-high speed until soft peaks form.
  3. Beat in sugar 1 tablespoon at a time.
  4. Increase mixer speed to high and beat until the mixture holds glossy peaks.
  5. Drop heaping tablespoonfuls of the mixture onto parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing them 1 inch apart.
  6. Bake until dry, crisp, and firm, about 2 hours. (The meringues are done when they release easily from the parchment.)
  7. Turn off the oven, prop open the door about ½ inch (use the handle of a wooden spoon), and let the meringues sit inside for 1 hour.
  8. Slide the parchment (with the meringues on top) onto wire racks and let cool completely.
  9. Melt chocolate in a small bowl and let cool to room temperature.
  10. Peel the meringues off the parchment, then dip the bottom of each into the chocolate, allowing any excess to drip off. Place on parchment-lined baking sheets and refrigerate just until the chocolate is set, 25 to 30 minutes.
  11. Store the cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Spring Bunny Cupcakes

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These bunny cupcakes are perfect for a springtime party.  For the frosting, the original recipe suggests pink vanilla buttercream frosting plus store-bought fluffy white ready-to-spread frosting.  I’m not a fan of buttercream frosting, so instead I made a batch of egg-white frosting and dyed half of it pink.

Spring Bunny Cupcakes
Adapted from Betty Crocker The Big Book of Cupcakes

Yield: 24 cupcakes

Yellow cupcakes:
2 1/3 cups gluten-free OR all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, softened3/4 – 1 1/4 cups sugar, depending on how sweet you want the cupcakes
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2/3 cup milk

Frosting and decorations:
Fluffy egg-white frosting
Red food coloring
5 large marshmallows
Pink sugar
Candy decorations and sprinkles

 

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.  Line muffin tins with paper baking cups.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter on medium speed for 30 seconds.
  3. Add sugar and beat for 2 minutes.
  4. Beat in eggs and vanilla.
  5. Beat in baking powder and salt.
  6. On low speed, beat in flour (1/3 at a time) alternately with milk (1/2 at a time).
  7. Divide batter in prepared tins.  Fill each muffin cup about 2/3 full.
  8. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  9. Cool in muffin tins for 5 minutes, then remove cupcakes and transfer to wire racks to cool completely.
  10. Prepare a batch of fluffy egg-white frosting.  Divide into two portions and color one of them pink with a few drops of red food coloring.
  11. Frost cupcakes with large dollops of pink frosting.
  12. Spoon a dollop of white frosting on top of the pink frosting.
  13. With kitchen scissors, cut each marshmallow crosswise into 5 slices.  Then cut through the center of each slice to within 1/4 inch of the edge.
  14. Separate so they resemble bunny ears and press one side of the marshmallow slices into pink sugar.
  15. Poke bunny ears into the white frosting mounds on the cupcakes.
  16. Use candy decorations as eyes and noses, and sprinkles as whiskers.

Pavlova

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This is a nice light (in terms of texture anyway) and fluffy dessert.  It’s also great for using up any extra egg whites you have.

Original recipe

Pavlova
Adapted from Allrecipes

Yield: 9″ pavlova

4 egg whites
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons tapioca starch OR cornstarch
2 cups heavy cream
Fresh fruit (6 sliced kiwis, mixed berries, etc.)

  1. Preheat oven to 300ºF.  Get a piece of parchment paper large enough to line a baking sheet and draw a circle 9″ in diameter it.  Flip the parchment paper over and place in the baking sheet.
  2. Beat egg whites until stiff.  Add sugar gradually while continuing to beat.
  3. When egg whites are stiff and glossy, fold in vanilla extract, lemon juice, and tapioca starch OR cornstarch.
  4. Spoon the egg white mixture into the circle on the parchment paper.  Smooth the mixture from the center out to the edge of the circle so that the center is slightly depressed.
  5. Bake for 1 hour.  Cool the meringue completely.
  6. Beat heavy cream until it forms stiff peaks.  Spread it on the meringue in the depression.  Put fresh fruit on top.

Fluffy Egg-White Frosting

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This frosting is light and fluffy, and you can add food coloring to make it your or your friends’ favorite colors!  I recommend using a stand mixer instead of a hand mixer so you don’t have to hover over the bowl for 10 long minutes.  (Unless you’re trying to build your arm muscles.)

Original recipe

Fluffy Egg-White Frosting
From allrecipes.com

1 cup sugar
1/3 cup water
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla
Food coloring, if desired

  1. Beat egg whites until stiff.
  2. Stir together sugar, water, and cream of tartar in a saucepan.
  3. Cook mixture over medium-high heat.  Stir to dissolve all the sugar.  Cook until you see little bubbles on the surface.
  4. Beat egg whites together with vanilla for a few seconds.
  5. While beating, slowly add the sugar mixture to the egg whites.  Add food coloring if desired.
  6. Continue to beat for 7-10 minutes until the frosting forms stiff peaks.