Thursday, February 26, 2009
Hey there, it's Christie from Toronto. I'm still on my break, but yesterday I finally received an e-mail from "The Barefoot Bloggers" telling me that Ian and I are officially members! Hurray! And what does this membership entail you ask? First, that you have a ton of butter on hand. Second, that every second Thursday of the month you bake, brown, roast, whip, stir, or burn (hopefully not) a specific recipe by Ina, the Barefoot Contessa.
So for the first challenge picked by BMK of Reservations not Required, we had these light and fluffy Pavlova's. The ingredients are simple enough, egg whites and sugar basically, but you have to bake them at a very low temperature for two hours, and then let them sit for another four.
Ha ha, nuts to that. We ate it after one hour of sitting and they were amazing, although the berry stew of strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries, plus the orange scented whipped cream didn’t hurt. The Pavlova melts in your mouth, it is just so light.
But, unfortunately you can only eat one of these beauties, because in following with the practices of the Barefoot Contessa, everything should have at least enough sugar and fat in the dish to kill a small Moose. (Nice Canadian reference there eh.)
Oh, by the way, I took this picture by myself! Im getting better eh! (please say yes Ian)
adapted from the book ‘Barefoot In Paris’, 2004
4 large egg whites, at room temperature
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
3/4 cups granulated sugar, divided
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Whipped Cream with Orange, recipe follows
Stewed berries, recipe follows
Whipped Cream with Orange
1 cups (1 pint) cold heavy cream
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tbsp orange juice
1 half-pint fresh blueberries
3 half-pints fresh raspberries and strawberries, divided
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon orange zest
2 teaspoons framboise (raspberry brandy)
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a small glass and a pencil, draw 6 (3 1/2-inch) circles on each piece of paper. Turn the paper face-down on the baking sheets. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites, cream of tartar, and salt on medium speed until frothy. Add a 1/2 cup of the sugar and raise the speed to high until the egg whites form very stiff peaks. Whisk in the vanilla. Carefully fold the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar into the meringue. With a large star - shaped pastry tip, pipe a disc of meringue inside each circle. Pipe another layer around the edge to form the sides of the shells. Bake for 2 hours, or until the meringues are dry and crisp but not browned. Turn off the heat and allow the meringues to sit in the oven for 4 hours or overnight.
Spread some of the sauce from the stewed berries on each plate. Place a meringue on top and fill with whipped cream. Top with berries and serve.
Whipped Cream with Orange
Whip the cream in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. When it starts to thicken, add the sugar, vanilla and orange and continue to whip until the cream forms stiff peaks. Don't overbeat.
Combine the blueberries, one-half pint of raspberries, and one half pint of strawberries with 1/3 cup water, the sugar and zest in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and cook uncovered over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes. The juice will become a syrup and the berries will be slightly cooked. Off the heat, stir in the remaining raspberries and the framboise. Set aside.