LITTLE MERINGUES - LOW CALORIE, FULL OF FLAVOUR.

05.12.2014

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There are so many tempting sweets and chocolate treats over the Christmas Season but having a good time does not mean stuffing our faces with all of them without any thought or control. Our body does not know that December normally is a binge month and everyone simply accepted that after this month, there will be at least 3kg more on the scale to purge come the new year and a resolution of strict dieting until summer.

We have been experimenting for the last month trying to create a selection of guilt free treats for this Christmas. For the beginning,  meringues - our national favourite.

It is a simple desser, but we can actually make it almost healthy. Instead of using just white sugar, halve it with Xylitol (natural sweetener that has much fewer calories than normal sugar). Because of the flavour of the fruit powder and a very sweet taste of Xylitol, we reduced the amount of sugar compared to the traditional meringues recipes. Egg whites are full of protein and on the top of it we added some freeze dried raspberry powder to add not only a flavour punch, but a few extra vitamins as well.

These little macaroons are great for sweet snacking or as an addition to ice cream and truffles. Enjoy!

Makes about 40 small meringues (depends on the size)

Ingriedients:

6 egg whites

Halve cup of Xylitol (natural sweetener)
¼ cup of custard sugar

2 big tablespoons of freeze dried raspberry powder 

Directions for the meringues:

Preheat the oven to fan 100C. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper (meringue can stick on greaseproof paper and foil).

Tip the 4 large egg whites into a large clean mixing bowl. Beat them on medium speed with an electric hand whisk until the mixture resembles a fluffy cloud and stands up in stiff peaks when the blades are lifted.

Now turn the speed up and start to add halve amount of Xylitol and a sugar, a dessertspoonful at a time. Continue beating for 3-4 seconds between each addition. It’s important to add the sugar slowly at this stage as it helps prevent the meringue from weeping later. However, don’t over-beat. When ready, the mixture should be thick and glossy.

Fold gently freeze dried raspberry powder.

Sift  the remaining Xylitol over the mixture, then gently fold it in with a big metal spoon or rubber spatula. Don’t over-mix. The mixture should now look smooth and billowy, almost like a snow drift.

Fold gently freeze dried raspberry powder.

Gently transfer ready mixture to the piping bag and slowly create the shapes you desire.

Bake for 1 1⁄2-1 3⁄4 hours in a fan oven, 1 1⁄4 hours in a conventional or gas oven, until the meringues sound crisp when tapped underneath and are a pale coffee colour. Leave to cool on the trays or a cooling rack. (The meringues will now keep in an airtight tin for up to 2 weeks, or frozen for a month.). Sprinkle more fruit powder on the top before serving for a handsome party snack..

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