My husband John has always been a meringue fanatic. For birthday desserts he generally requests a pie topped with meringue. John’s mother often made him meringue cookies which my husband Loved (the capital L on love is intentional). To me, they are a little boring. I can take them or leave them. !–more–>
When I made my Caramelized Pear Kolaches, I had leftover egg whites that I plopped in the fridge for another day. Looking for a way to use them, I came across a recipe for Chocolate Meringue Stars in the Taste of Home 1999 Annual Recipes cookbook. They looked so easy to put together. I knew the hubby would like them too. Did you know that chocolate is what keeps our love strong? We often bond over chocolate.I took the egg whites out of the refrigerator and let them come to room temperature while my oven preheated to 300 degrees F. The recipe actually asks for 3 egg whites. I had 4 and it didn’t seem to make any difference in the recipe.
In a mixer bowl, beat the egg whites and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract until soft peaks form. Gradually add 3/4 cup of sugar to the egg whites and beat until stiff peaks form. Sift 1/4 cup unsweetened baking cocoa over egg whites and gently fold until completely combined. Fill a pastry bag with a large star tip. I used a Wilton #1M but an 8b or similar tip will work. Pipe 1 1/4 inch stars on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, or covered in foil and sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. You can crowd them because they don’t expand much in the oven. I barely got them on one baking sheet. I recommend you use two. You don’t want them to touch. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. I removed them from the baking sheet by sliding my parchment paper directly onto the cooling rack so they didn’t dry out. I also pulled them off the parchment paper as soon as they were cool enough to touch because I didn’t want them to stick.
While the cookies cool, in a microwave or double boiler, melt 3 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate with 1 tablespoon shortening. Stir until smooth. Dip the cookies halfway into the glaze and place them back on the same parchment paper to set. Store in an airtight container.
These cookies were delightfully chocolatey. They had a nice little crunch on the outside and a softer center. I am officially a fan of Chocolate Meringue Stars!
Chocolate Meringue Stars
3 egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup baking cocoa, sifted
3 ounces semi sweet chocolate (chips or squares)
1 tablespoon shortening
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a mixer bowl, beat egg whites and vanilla until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar and beat until stiff peaks form. Sift cocoa over egg whites and gently fold until combined. Fill a pastry bag fit with a large star tip (#1M or #8b). Pipe 1 1/4 inch stars on a baking sheet. Bake 30 to 35 minutes. Cool on a rack.
In a microwave or double boiler, melt semi-sweet chocolate with shortening. Stir until smooth. Dip 1/2 of each cookie in the chocolate and place on parchment or wax paper to set.
Recipe adapted from 1999 Taste of Home Annual Recipes
Provided by HostessAtHeart[/recipes]