inspirations and tips!
How To Make A Perfect Meringue
February 9, 2019 – by Jacques Faucher
Every time I whisk egg whites to make perfect stiff peaks, I think of my Aunt Louise, who, alongside her husband, were egg producers.
One day she confessed that she was having trouble getting her egg whites into “firm snow peaks”. Early on in my life I had a fascination for baking and cooking, and I became interested in this problem and I discovered, OMG, that my aunt’s new plastic bowl (Tupperware) was the cause. Indeed, plastic is the enemy of the egg white.
CAUTION … the egg whites should not be cold. Remember to take your eggs out of the refrigerator one to two hours in advance so they are at room temperature.
In writing this blog, I remembered the taste and texture of the Pavlova I love, an easy recipe to make. That you’ll find later on in this article.
It is important to avoid plastic kitchen utensils, especially for the bowl. A drop of fat could hide in one of its cracks and ruin your stiff snow peaks. Choose a stainless steel or porcelain bowl and a whisk to quickly incorporate air bubbles.
This is a crucial step to the success of this recipe. Also the presence of egg yolk can make this much more difficult. Adding a pinch of salt will help bind the egg whites, making the consistency and texture a bit more robust.
A rustic-looking meringue for a Pavlova
– Place the grill at the center of the oven.
– Preheat to 135 ° C (275 ° F).
– In a bowl, beat four egg whites, that are at room temperature, with an electric mixer until they have stiff peaks.
– While continuously beating, gradually add a cup of sugar, a tablespoon at a time.
– In a small bowl, dissolve two teaspoons of starch in a teaspoon of vinegar. Gently add this mixture to the egg whites.
Watch your egg whites form stiff peaks, but be careful. Overdoing with the beating can cause them to become granular and loose their smoothness.
Whip until stiff peaks are obtained.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a lid or other round object, draw a circle of about 20 cm. (8 inches) in diameter, with a lead pencil.
Flip the parchment paper over to avoid contamination.
Spread the meringue on the parchment paper, while remaining inside the circle.
Bake for about 1 hour 15 minutes or until meringue is lightly browned.
Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack.
Top the cooled meringue with Chantilly cream (heavy cream and extra fine granulated sugar).
Decorate with fresh fruits. One of my personal favorite, passion fruit. Its beautiful fragrance will seduce your guests. Then, add some dark chocolate shavings.
For best results, the Pavlova should be baked and served the same day.
Named in honor of the famous Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova, her specificity is the crispiness on the outside and softness on the inside.
About Jacques Faucher
Born and raised on a farm in Beauce, Jacques grew up surrounded by large vegetable gardens and fruit trees.
From a very young age, his parents initiated Jacques to the kitchen by letting him prepare the family meals during the summer holidays. It is from that experience that he developed a passion for cooking.
As the years went on, Jacques became more and more interested in the art of food and all its aspects. And in order to pursue his passion, becoming a chef was the next step in his culinary adventure. Once graduated, he worked in several upscale restaurants in Montreal where the rigorous schedule became his training ground. Having acquired so much experience, this led Jacques to open his own restaurant, the Montreo. A great adventure that earned him several great reviews and praises.
After some years had passed, Jacques found yet again another passion. Combining his talent as a chef and incorporating his natural talent for prop and food styling. Today, Jacques Faucher creates recipes and is the lead stylist on many photo shoots for some of Montreal’s best-known food chains.
Follow Jacques on Instagram @jacfaucher.