Haniela's: ~Christmas Poinsettia Meringues~

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

~Christmas Poinsettia Meringues~


I decided  to start Christmas early this year(most years I do this last week before Christmas Eve), I decorated house with few Christmas decorations over the weekend, just some small trees, candles and NO you can't see my house from the universe, we don't even own any Christmas lights anymore (I'm so impatient with them), but I love to go on  a ride at local farm where they have an amazing Christmas Light Show, it is magical.

 Do you remember last year I made super cute Meringue Santa Hats, and since I'm trying to be loyal to a holiday tradition I decided to make Poinsettia Meringues but before we get to how to make them here is tiny bit from the history of this flower I found interesting, you can read a whole article by clicking on the link.
 The Poinsettia, the Flower of the Holy Night (history) was introduced to the United Stated in1828 and became a  part of a 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.









Photo Credit:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poinsettia


Meringues(about 25- 30 medium size flowers)
4 large egg whites
3/4 cup granulated 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)
flower petals -tip Wilton #70
green leafs - tip Wilton #352
yellow dost- 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 times as I keep loosing flower nails)
3"x3"parchment squares
 

Meringue
Wipe your mixing bowl and tools with a paper tower dipped in vinegar, wipe dry. 
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. Whisking constantly, until sugar dissolves and mixture is hot to the touch, about 5 minutes or so.
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. Add the flavoring and mix for a minute or so  to incorporate extract.

Coloring  Meringue for Poinsettia
Take one cup of white meringue and color it green
Take 1/4 cup of white meringue and color it yellow
Color remaining meringue with  red

Fit your piping bags with your tips and fill them with meringue.


  
Preheat oven to 180F-200 F.(my oven is no cooperating  so that is why I have to use this low setting, but you will be fine at 200F as well)
Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

Place a dot of meringue onto the flower nail and place a piece of parchment square on top to secure it.
1. Pipe the first row of  5 petals s using red meringue
2. Pipe the second row of 5 petals, slightly shorter and offset to the first row
3. Add green leaves
4. Add yellow dots
5. Dip small dry brush into a disco dust and shake of the excess over freshly piped meringues(optional)
6. Bake for 3 hours, turn the oven off and let the meringues cool in the oven. Store in the airtight container.



Not only these meringues make for a festive presentation but they make a beautiful handmade gift.



 

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