Italian Meringue
(used for topping for Chocolate Moose Pie)

1 cup superfine (a.k.a Bar ) sugar ****( if you can't get superfine sugar use 1 1/3 cups normal sugar, or make your own by putting regular sugar in a food processor for about 15-30 seconds. This is the best option since it will dissolve better)
1/3 cup water
5 egg whites, at room temperature
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

Making the water/sugar mixture

In a small pot over low heat, combine sugar and water. Swirl the pot over the burner to dissolve the sugar completely. Do not stir. Increase the heat and boil to soft-ball stage (235 to 240 degrees). Use a candy thermometer for accuracy. Wash down the inside wall of the pot with a wet pastry brush. This will help prevent sugar crystals from forming around the sides, falling in and causing a chain reaction.

Prepare your meringue.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip the eggs whites on low speed until foamy. Add the cream of tartar, increase the speed to medium, and beat until soft peaks form. With the mixer running, pour the hot sugar syrup in a thin stream over fluffed egg whites. Beat until the egg whites are stiff and glossy. Spread the meringue over a hot cake or pie. You can leave the meringue as-is. I sometimes use a kitchen torch  to lightly brown it. You can also brown it in the oven at 350 for a about 10-15 minutes (watch it).

If you didn't use all the meringue on the pie, cake, etc. you can make Meringue Cloud Cookies

Preheat oven to 200 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Dollop spoonfuls of meringue onto baking pans, alternatively you may use a pastry bag with a star tip. Bake for 2 hours until crisp. Turn off the oven and allow meringues to cool and completely dry out.




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