What’s not to love about the simple sweet texture of a meringue? You don’t have to shape them like hearts, of course, (look how pretty these are from Tish!) but they do work well for Valentine’s Day, or romantic evening, or even a bridal shower brunch. Set the egg whites aside that aren’t used in the curd for the merigue to avoid waste. And note: You’ll have a lot more curd leftover, but you’ll definitely use it for so many other applications like cake fillings or at tea time with scones.
Makes approximately 12 servings
Meyer Lemon Curd
- 2 egg yolks
- 2 large eggs
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons Meyer lemon zest
- ½ cup Meyer lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 4 large (120 grams) egg whites, at room temperature
- Pinch of fine sea salt
- ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 1/4 cups (250 grams) granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons vanilla paste or extract
- ½ cup (115 grams) cold heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar
- Strawberries, for decoration
Make the Curd
- In a medium heatproof mixing bowl, add the egg yolks, eggs, sugar, zest, lemon juice, and heavy cream and whisk to combine.
- Set the mixture over a saucepan of simmering water and whisk constantly, until the mixture becomes thick and the temperature registers 170°F, about 12 to 15 minutes.
- Remove the mixture from the heat and add the butter chunks a few at a time, whisking to melt and combine.
- Once the mixture is creamy and consistent, press it through a sieve into a separate clean bowl and cool completely to room temperature or refrigerate until ready to use.
Make the Meringue
- Preheat the oven to 200˚F. Line half sheet pans with parchment paper and set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, using the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites at medium speed until foamy. Add the salt and cream of tartar and beat at medium-high speed until soft peaks begin to form. Gradually add the sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, and increase the speed to high. Beat the whites until stiff peaks form.
- Remove the bowl from the mixer stand and sift the cornstarch over the meringue. Add the vanilla extract and then, using a rubber spatula, gently fold both into the meringue. Using a cookie scoop or a spoon, make two circular mounds of meringue next to each other and then drag the back of the scoop or spoon downwards to create a point of a heart. Bake the meringues for about an hour, or until they are just dry and firm on the outside but still soft in the center. Turn the oven off and allow the meringues to cool in the oven for 2 hours. Once cool, store the meringues in an airtight container in a dry place for up to 4 days.
Make the Whipped Cream and Assemble
- Pour the heavy cream into a medium sized mixing bowl and whip on medium speed with a hand mixer until it begins to thicken.
- Add the confectioners’ sugar and continue to whip until firm peaks form.
- When you’re to serve, use a heart-shaped cutter or a paring knife to cut out pieces of strawberries for decoration.
- Assemble by spooning the lemon curd into the crevices of a meringue, then topping with whipped cream, and then a heart. Serve immediately.