Pistachio macaroon meringues with strawberry fool topping
- June 2016
- Serves 10
- Hands-on time 40 min, oven time 1 hour 30 minutes, plus cooling
Adding almonds and pistachios to classic meringues takes them to a whole new level – topped with fresh berries and a sweet strawberry fool, these individual meringues would make a standout dessert for any summer party.
- 29.5g (14.3g saturated)
- 43.8g (43.3g sugars)
- 110g pistachios, plus extra, roughly chopped, to top the fool
- 50g ground almonds
- 300g icing sugar
- 6 large free-range egg whites
- Tiny pinch green powdered food colouring
For the strawberry fool topping
- 400g strawberries, hulled and halved
- 50g caster sugar
- 400ml double cream
- 50g icing sugar
- Seasonal berries to decorate
You’ll also need
- 2-3 baking sheets, lined with baking paper
- Heat the oven to 130°C/110°C fan/gas ¾. Put the pistachios in a food processor and grind until finely chopped but not oily. Reserve 10g, then tip the rest into a bowl with the almonds and set aside.
- Put the sugar and egg whites in a large, clean mixing bowl and set over a pan of gently simmering water. (Don’t let the water touch the bowl.) Using an electric mixer, whisk until the mixture stiffens and becomes meringue-like (make sure the cable is out of the way of any flames/heat). Remove the bowl from the heat and keep whisking until the meringue is very stiff and almost cooled.
- Using a balloon whisk, stir in the food colouring, if using, until the meringue is light green. Gently fold in the nuts quickly with the whisk, trying not to knock out the air from the meringue.
- Dollop 2-3 dessertspoonfuls of meringue in rough circles on each piece of paper to make 10 meringues. Swirl into pretty shapes, scooping out the middle slightly so there’s room to add the topping. Scatter the meringues with the reserved ground pistachios, then bake for 1 hour 30 minutes. Turn off the oven and leave the meringues inside to cool for 2 hours. After this time, remove them from the oven and allow to cool completely.
- Meanwhile, for the fool, put the strawberries and sugar in a pan with a large splash of water and bring to a simmer. Cook over a medium-high heat, stirring often, for 10-15 minutes until the strawberries have broken down and the mix is thick and syrupy. Whizz in a food processor (or use a stick blender), then strain through a sieve, pushing the fruit through with the back of a spoon. Cool. Discard the contents of the sieve – or whizz into a smoothie.
- Whip the cream and icing sugar until it forms soft peaks when the whisk is removed (the peaks should fall over). Dollop the cooled strawberry purée into the cream, then gently swirl through to create a marbled effect. Carefully peel the meringues from the paper, then top/fill with the fool and some seasonal berries. Scatter with the extra chopped pistachios, then serve.
Don’t grind your pistachios as fine as ground almonds – you risk them turning oily and causing the meringues to split. They’ll taste good, but won’t look as pretty. Stop grinding when there are still a few larger chunks.
We used nibbed pistachios and powdered food colouring (apple green), both from souschef.co.uk. Nibbed pistachios have had their skins removed, giving a delicate flavour, but you can use regular ones.
You must use powdered food colouring for meringues, as liquid can cause your mixture to collapse.
Keep the meringues cool and dry in an airtight container for up to 48 hours. The strawberry syrup can be made up to 5 days ahead and kept chilled.
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