Since we gave away at least 85% of all the Christmas cookies and candy I made, Eric was complaining that I made all these delicious things and he didn't get to eat any of them (or not as much as he'd like). Being the sweet and loving girlfriend that I am, I made some cookies just for him.
Meringue cookies had almost made it on my holiday baking list. I had it narrowed down to two different recipes I wanted to try, both from the Food Network: one by Emeril Lagasse and the other by Anne Burrell. While I had all I needed to make a basic meringue cookie (eggs white and sugar), I didn't have all the ingredients for either recipe, so I combined the two recipes and worked with what was in my pantry. The results were delicious.
|Two-toned meringue cookies|
2 large egg whites, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
2/3 cup sugar*
1 teaspoon almond extract
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
red food coloring, optional
green food coloring, optional
*I used granulated sugar because it was all I had in the pantry. Emeril's recipe calls for caster (superfine) sugar, which I would highly recommend.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two cookie sheets with waxed paper.
Mix the sugar and cinnamon together in a small bowl; set aside. Set your hand or standing mixer to the second highest speed and beat the egg whites on high until they become foamy, then add the cream of tartar and beat until fluffy. Gradually add the cinnamon-sugar, 3 tablespoon at a time, continually beating the mixture. When about half the sugar remains, add the almond extract. Slowly add the remaining cinnamon-sugar. Beat is shiny and forms stiff peaks (be prepared; it takes away).
Optional: To make my cookies Christmas-y, I add food coloring. Divide the batter into do bowl. Beat red food coloring to one bowl and green food coloring to the other.
Place a tablespoon of the batter on the wax-lined cookie sheets, spacing the cookies an inch apart. Turn off the oven and place the cookie sheets in the preheated oven. Leave the cookies in the oven overnight, 6-8 hours.
To make two-toned cookies like I did. Spoon about a teaspoon of the red meringue onto the cookie sheet then about a teaspoon of green meringue next to it so the two teaspoon touch.