Meringues are attractive desserts and so a very nice way of finishing a meal, especially if you have some left-over egg whites. Using cloudberries makes it feel so Swedish and gives the meringue an exquisite taste.
Cloudberries (hjortron) only grow in the wild in northern Scandinavia and are a much sought-after delicacy. I’ve never seen the berries in the UK, but it is possible to buy cloudberry jam (usually sold as hjortronsylt) which is used in this recipe. IKEA occasionally have the jam, but otherwise you will find it in a specialist shop or online. John Duxbury
• You can prepare the vanilla and lime mixture in advance and then make the meringues at the last moment.
• Make sure the oven is really hot before you put the meringues in as they need an instant blast of heat to push up the egg whites, before they have the chance to set.
• Use the juice of half a lemon instead of lime juice if you prefer.
|100 g||(3½ oz)||cloudberry jam (often sold under the Swedish name of hjortronsylt)|
|butter for greasing|
|juice of 1 lime|
|50 g||(2 oz)||caster (superfine) sugar plus extra for ramekins|
You will also need 4 ramekins.
1. Preheat the oven to 250°C (475°F, gas 9, fan 200°C).
2. Sieve the cloudberry jam into a bowl to create a kind of seedless coulis. Keep both parts.
3. Generously grease the insides of six individual ramekins. Coat the insides with some caster (superfine) sugar. (This helps the meringues rise because it gives the mixture a textured surface to climb.)
4. Mix the lime juice, water and sugar in a saucepan. Cut the vanilla pod lengthways and scrape the seeds into the saucepan. Heat over a moderate heat stirring continuously until the sugar is dissolved. Bring to a boil and then sieve.
5. Whisk the egg whites until stiff using an electric mixer. Slowly add the sugar syrup whilst still whisking. Keep whisking for around 4 minutes.
6. Slowly add the cloudberry coulis whilst still whisking until thoroughly mixed.
7. Pour the mixture into the ramekins. Bake in the oven for 7 or 8 minutes until nicely risen, golden brown on top but still slightly wobbly.
8. Garnish with the cloudberries sieved from the jam. (If you have a nice thick jam, use unsieved cloudberry jam.)
The meringues are also quite pleasant cold and they do keep their shape fairly well.
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