Valentine's Lemon, Orange, Grapefruit Meringue Hearts


Awesome fake ribbon ftw!

(Please excuse the super long title...went for "descriptive")
As depressing as this may sound, this year was the first year that Valentine’s Day affected me. This day is when every guy is given the excuse to be super-mushy for the sake of “love” and girls can expect pretty cheesy manifestations of it. 

Lots of liquids in this recipe.
My boyfriend’s almost a health-nut so cake, cookies, chocolate—they were all out of the question. So the idea for meringue came. Egg whites? Not that bad. Sugar (I won’t tell him about how much goes in here). Haha But I was able to make a lot of meringue so the amount of sugar per heart isn’t that bad at all!

Beated to stiff peaks.

I decided to make lemon, orange, and grapefruit flavoured meringue. Coupled with making them heart shaped, and the powers of red food colouring, voilà! Valentine’s day themed meringue. 

Grapefruit (left). Lemon (middle). Orange (right).

Mixing in the red food colouring looked pretty darn cool I gotta say.

Lemon (left). Grapefruit (middle). Orange (right). It's still morning which meant nice ambient light.

Pillowy Meringue Hearts (MarthaStewartRecipe)
Makes about 6 dozen hearts
4        egg whites                                     1 tsp   finely grated orange zest
1 cup  light brown sugar, packed            1 tsp     finely grated grapefruit zest
pinch   cream of tartar                             1 tsp   finely grated lemon zest
⅔ tsp  vanilla                                             red food colouring

1.     Preheat oven to 225o F.
2.     In heatproof bowl, add egg whites, sugar, tartar.
3.     Set bowl over pan of simmering water.
4.     Whisk until warm & sugar’s dissolved.
5.     Using whisk attachment, beat from slow à fast until stiff peaks form, 5 min.
6.     Beat in vanilla extract.
7.     Split meringue evenly between 3 bowls.
8.     Using rubber spatula, mix in one citrus zest into each.
9.     As well, use food colouring to achieve desired hue.
10. Let meringue sit 15-20 min so it holds its shape better. 
11. Shape into hearts on parchment-lined baking sheet about ½-inch apart.
12. Bake in batches until firm & can be easily removed, 1-1½ hours per batch.
13. Remove and cool on a wire rack.
14. Store between layers of parchment in airtight container for up to 3 days at room temperature.

Tucked about a dozen into a white box (see first photo of post, above). Scrambling to find red ribbon…that wasn’t going to happen so I just used a red sharpie. 

On the parchment paper. About 1 hour later, they emerge from the oven.
The colour wasn’t as vibrant as I expected it to turn out. It was airy and light so that’s good. I’d say the grapefruit one turned out the best, surprisingly.

3 out of 5 NOMs