November 30, 2011

Cake it Pretty: Meringue Christmas Poinsettia TUTORIAL




Poinsettias are synonymous with Christmas, so adorning any baked creations with these edible, glittered beauties ticks soooo many boxes for me this season!

Not only these Poinsettias meringues make for a stunning, festive desserts or decorations, but they also make for a beautiful handmade gift! AND they're a lot easier to make then they look! ;)

Last year I made super cute Meringue Santa Hats, and since I'm trying to be loyal to a tradition I decided to make Poinsettia Meringues this year, but before we get down to it, here's a tiny bit of history for you:

The Poinsettia, the Flower of the Holy Night (history) was introduced to the United Stated in 1828 and became part of the whole Christmas tradition in early 1900s. It is now being used worldwide and just like a Christmas tree, people associate this beautiful flower with Christmas season - Even better when it's edible and dusted with glitter, I say! ;)

Meringue Ingredients: (about 25- 30 medium size flowers)

* 4 large egg whites
* 3/4 cup sugar
* pinch of salt
* 1 1/2tsp extract(use, vanilla, mint, orange, lemon..etc)
* red, green and yellow gel food coloring
* rainbow luster dust (optional)
* small brush (optional, use to apply disco dust)
* 3"x3"parchment squares
* flower petals -tip Wilton #70
* green leafs - tip Wilton #352
* yellow dots - tip Wilton #3
* flower nail (if you don't have a flower nail, you can easily use your KitchenAid Cook's Series Stainless Steel Meat Thermometer - wrap it in the plastic wrap to protect the surface and then continue as if you were using a flower nail, I find this to be really useful and have used it numerous time as I keep loosing flower nails)


 

How To Make The Meringue:

1. Wipe your mixing bowl and tools using with a paper tower dipped in vinegar, wipe dry. 
2. Using a whisk combine egg whites, pinch of salt, sugar in a heat proof bowl, best tempered glass or your stainless steel mixer bowl. Set the bowl over the pan with simmering water.
3. Whisking constantly, until sugar dissolves and mixture is hot to the touch, about 5 minutes or so.
4. Transfer the bowl to your electric mixers, using wire attachment, beat the mixture gradually from low to high, until stiff peaks are formed. About 8-10 minutes.
5. Add the flavoring and mix for a minute or so  to incorporate extract.


Coloring The Meringue:

1. Take one cup of white meringue and color it green
2 Take 1/4 cup of white meringue and color it yellow
3. Color remaining meringue with  red




Piping and Baking:

1. Fit your piping bags with your tips and fill them with meringue and Preheat oven to 180 F.
2. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
3. Place a dot of meringue onto the flower nail and place a piece of parchment square on top to secure it.
4. Pipe the first row of 5 petals s using red meringue
5. Pipe the second row of 5 petals, slightly shorter and offset to the first row
6. Add green leaves
7. Add yellow dots
8. Dip small dry brush into a disco dust and shake of the excess over freshly piped meringues(optional)
9. Bake for 3 hours, turn the oven off and let the meringues cool in the oven. Store in the airtight container.





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