For those who doesn't really fond of chocolate, Claire Clark's Meringue Heart might be perfect to serve for Valentine's day. She serve this meringue with cream chantilly and crushed raspberries, then decorate it with summer berries. Since I see plenty of citrus at the market and they are sweet and juicy, plus inexpensive, I took the opportunity to make a good use of this fruit. Use any fruit that are in season in your area, because they will taste at their best. If you want to splurge a little, go wild, use any kind of fancy exotic fruit you can find, after all, this is a special occasion, and you make it for your love one, right?
Meringue Heart For Valentine's Day
recipe adapted from Claire Clark's Indulge
make 2 hearts
For the meringue
3 medium egg whites
1 tsp lemon juice
6 oz caster sugar (superfine sugar)
Preheat oven to 225 degrees F.
Lightly oil a baking sheet, then lay a piece of parchment paper, press it down well.
Prepare a piping bag and fitted with 1/4 inch (5 mm) plain nozzle.
In an impeccably clean mixer bowl, add the egg whites, lemon juice, and 1/3 of the sugar. Beat until they form firm peak, add another 1/3 of sugar and continue to beat for another 2 to 3 minutes. Add the remaining sugar, mix just enough to incorporate them.
Transfer the meringue into prepared piping bag. pipe two heart shapes, fill in the center by following the shape of the hearts until full. Starting on the outer side of the heart, pipe another line on top follow the original shape, repeat the process so you will have three tiers that the outside egde is higher then the middle.
Bake the hearts in the center oven for 40 to 50 minutes, until the outside is set. Do not overbake the base, the least you want is having the center totally dry. Leave to cool on the baking sheet.
1 large meyer lemon
5 small (size about 1½ inch diameter) tangerines
3 egg yolk
2 oz caster sugar*
* when in season, citruses are quite sweet. If you think that is too acid, increase the amount of sugar to you liking.
Squeeze out the juice of Meyer lemon and tangerines (you will have about 1/3 cup of tangerine juice) directly into a sauce pan, add sugar, and bring to a gentle boil.
In another bowl, whisk the egg yolk.
When the citrus juice has come to a gentle boil, slowly pour into the egg yolk, keep whisking while you are doing this. Return the mixture into sauce pan, set the heat to low, and continue to whisk and cook until its thicken enough to leave a trail on the surface of a wooden spoon. Do not let it to become a boil. Transfer to a clean bowl, cover the surface with plastic wrap to prevent a skin forming. Cool completely.
Simply whip heavy cream with a little sugar, then fold in citrus curd. Fill the center of each heart with it, decorate with fruit of your choice. Enjoy!