I had a bunch of egg whites that needed to be used, so I googled “things to do with leftover egg whites” or some such nonsense and found a bunch of meringue cookie recipes. So I combined some of the things I read and gave it a go. Twice.
I’m quite pleased with the flavor and the consistency; they taste like marshmallows! And for those of us who try and avoid the consumption of gelatin, this is really quite awesome. But after two batches (three attempts at baking) and a few adjustments, I’m having a little trouble with them sinking as they cool.
I made two batches: the first batch I may not have beat the eggs as much as I should have, so I had a go at it again this morning. (Had the egg whites, figured, why not?) The second batch turned out much better, but still sunk a wee bit. Anyway, you can probably tell the difference between the two batches in the picture above. If not, let me know.
I still think this is a recipe worth sharing as they taste wonderful. And this is by far one of the easiest recipes I’ve ever done. I even used a pastry bag and a special piping attachment to make the dollops—it’s still easy.
What you will need
- KitchenAid mixer (wire whip attachment)
- Baking sheet
- Parchment paper (or a Silpat)
- Pastry bag with piping attachment (optional)
- 4 egg whites
- Pinch of salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Mom It Down!
Preheat oven to 275.
Place some parchment paper on a cookie sheet (or a Silpat). Set aside.
In mixer bowl, add eggs, salt and cream of tartar and beat until soft peaks form. (Of course, I didn’t get a shot of this stage.)
Slowly add sugar. Beat more until stiff peaks form.
Fill a pastry bag (or you can use a spoon or a freezer bag with the corner snipped). Add dollops onto your cookie sheet.
Bake for 35 minutes.
When you’re done, turn the oven off and crack the door of the oven. Let them cool while in the oven. This will lessen the sinking.
Like I said, in order to keep these from falling as they’re cooling, it’s best to keep the humidity as low as possible, so keeping them in the oven to cool is your best bet. My second batch still sunk a bit, but not nearly as much as the first.
Make sure your eggs are beat enough. I believe my first batch may have fallen more because I did not. The second batch held its form much better than the first because I beat the egg whites a bit longer.
I’ve also read, this morning, that you can bake at a much lower temperature (200) with the oven door cracked. I haven’t tried this, but figured it’s something I should mention.
I added vanilla to this instead of what the original recipe called for, which was lemon extract. So, feel free to substitute the vanilla with lime, lemon or orange zest—or all three! I might try this with almond as well. And I hear they make a great holiday treat by grinding up some peppermint.
Egg white experts! What are some other ways to avoid sinking? I am all ears. Learn me something, Internet.