Nothing is a better indication of a great night out than a sleep in until 12 noon the next day! I had my birthday celebrations on Friday night, starting with trés classy drinks at Zeta Bar, enjoying their Coney Island festivities, before proceeding to Stonewall Bar on Oxford Street for a spot of dancing, and when our heeled-shod feet finally conceded defeat, ended the night by devouring slices of pizza whilst standing on the sidewalk at Taylor Square.
With our brief glimpse of summer gone, I am hoping to re-invoke it with this recipe, although looking at the weather forecast ahead, methinks it will be in vain. I pinched this recipe from an article in Daily Life and have tweaked it a little, using blueberries instead of blackberries for the compote as frozen blueberries were on special, and fresh strawberries instead of fresh raspberries, as I had three punnets in the fridge. You can pretty much mix and match berries as you like for this recipe, so long as you use two that are different colours so they stand out.
The brown sugar crème fraiche is also quite tasty, without the heaviness of double cream and the caramel-ly undertones thanks to the brown sugar. Don’t be alarmed if you mix it together and it turns out to be a bit runny – it’s perfectly fine! The hint of balsamic also goes perfectly with the strawberries.
To serve four, you will need:
- 200g frozen blueberries;
- 25g icing sugar;
- 2 egg whites;
- 100g caster sugar;
- 150g crème fraiche (or sour cream is just as good);
- 1 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar;
- 50g brown sugar;
- Fresh strawberries, sliced to serve.
Place the blueberries in a saucepan with 25 mLs of water and the icing sugar. Simmer over a low heat until syrupy (approximately 10 to 15 minutes). Crush the berries a little with a wooden spoon and cool.
Preheat the oven to 120 degrees Celcius.
Line two baking trays with paper and spray the tops with cooking spray as the meringues can get quite sticky.
Beat the egg whites in a clean, dry bowl until thick, then beat in the sugar gradually until stiff and glossy.
Add three tablespoons of the compote and marble. Don’t get too enthusiastic about marbling like I did, or you’ll just get blue meringues with little to no marbling.
Blob on tray in eight blobs. Try to make them circular-ish.
Bake for one and a half hours before cooling in the oven. I didn’t keep a very close eye on my meringues as I was distracted by, er, practising my Gangnam Style dance routine (Ayyyyyyy sexy lady! ). So they were a little brown but I didn’t mind too much.
Anyway, once they’re cooled, combine the crème fraiche, balsamic and sugar together in a bowl.
Serve the meringues by arranging two on a plate, however you like, and top with the brown sugar crème fraiche, berry compote, sliced strawberries and mint leaves if you have any.
RESIST IF YOU CAN….!!
I certainly couldn’t