What do the following have in common: the circus, county fairs and some really trendy restaurant dessert menus.
They all share the need to serve up wispy, neon spools of sugar in the form of an edible tousled hair brush.
Never understood it. I think that the clan of pixie stix groupies are usually the leaders of the cotton candy clubs as well.
I’m not sure there is taste in it other than intense sweetness, as if the magenta glow is intended to inspire your taste buds to experience the color pink as a flavor.
So imagine my surprise when something airy and light disintegrated on my tongue, much like cotton candy but with distinct flavor and a lightly sweet presence.
It was these Peanut Butter and Chocolate Speckled Meringues.
They are totally satisfying on their own, but tease the tops with peanut butter drizzle and chocolate shavings and they will blow those ordinary kiss-shaped sugar bites out of the water.
With a solid peanut butter flavor and a background of chocolate-y goodness, these gluten free meringues are perfect to chase a heavy meal or to display on a dessert tray for instant intrigue.
When I become ring master, I shall sell these meringues on sticks and save the cotton candy for the clown wigs.
Getcha speckled meringues here!
Peanut Butter and Chocolate Speckled Meringues
For the Meringues
- 4 large egg whites at room temperature
- pinch of fine sea salt
- 1 C superfine sugar
- 1/4 tsp vanilla
- 1/8 tsp cream of tartar
- 2 1/2 T powdered peanut butter (available at most natural food stores or Whole Foods)
- 2 1/2 T finely grated chocolate (I used 55% dark and refrigerated before grating to make the job easier)
For the Toppings
- 2 T creamy peanut butter
- small pinch of fine sea salt
- 1/8 tsp vanilla
- 1/4 C confectioners sugar
- 3 T heavy whipping cream
- 1 T water
- 1/4 C chocolate-grated shavings – to be sprinkled on top
- Preheat oven to 200F. Line two cookie sheets with Silpat mats or parchment paper.
- Sift the powdered peanut butter to remove lumps. Place in a bowl with the grated chocolate and whisk together. Set aside.
- With a stand mixer, beat the egg whites and the salt on medium until frothy, about 1/2 minutes.
- Add the sugar 1 T at a time while beating on medium high until all the sugar is gone. Add the cream of tartar and the vanilla and beat.
- Move speed to high and beat 4-6 minutes until stiff peaks form. Fold in the peanut butter and chocolate mixture in two parts, making sure to preserve as much of the stiffness of the whites as possible.
- Use piping bag to make your desired shapes. Bake 1 hour in preheated oven. Rotate the baking pan shelves in the oven and then bake another hour. Allow to cool on the baking sheet on a cooling rack before removing. Once cool, apply glaze.
- To Make Glaze: Whisk the peanut butter, salt, vanilla and sugar together. Add whipping cream 1 T at a time. Then add water little by little to achieve desired consistency. Sprinkle chocolate over the top while wet and enjoy!
Recipe adapted from Give Me Lemons