Monday, April 25, 2011

Magic Mushroom Meringues

These mushroom meringues are really lovely to put out on a dessert table, create a lot of conversation and actually not that hard to make -- that is why I call them Magic Mushrooms.  And even better they are both Passover and gluten free friendly.

The only problem with making meringues is the weather -- if it is too wet or humid meringues can get sticky (they will still look and taste delish but they may all stick together).  So that is the humidity warning.

Materials Needed:
2 parchment paper lined cookie sheets
1 large pastry bag -- one fit with #? tip 
cocoa powder in a shaker bottle to dust over the mushrooms

The Meringue Recipe:
8 large egg whites (room temperature)
16 TBSP of superfine sugar (if you don't have superfine sugar, process granulated white sugar in a food processor for 30 to 60 seconds)
1 tsp. white vinegar

Using an electric mixer, beat the room temperature egg whites until foamy.  Add the vinegar and beat until soft peaks form.  Continue beating on a high speed and gradually adding superfine sugar until the whites are very stiff.
Fill the large piping bag with about half the meringue and refill when you need it.

Piping the CAPS:
Holding the pastry bag upright and close to the parchment paper, pipe the meringue into rounds building the meringue to form a 1.5" to 2" cap that is about 1" high (but really the size is not so important as the shape and they can all be different sizes).  Gently lift the bag and stop the pressure as you slowly move the tip off the meringue.   Try to make the top as smooth as possible but if there is a small peek use a wet fingertip to smooth.  
Piping the STEMS:
Holding the pastry bag upright and close to the parchment paper, pipe the meringue into a cone-shape, making the base a little larger than the tip.  The stem should be between 3/4" to 1.25" high -- try to vary the hight and diameter of the stems so they look more real.  I also usually make a few extra stems just in case some tip over.
Other Details:
Dust with cocoa powder.
Place both cookie sheets in a cool oven in the middle racks.
Turn oven up to 200 degrees F.
Bake the meringues for approximately one hour, or until the mushrooms are firm to the touch.
Rotate the baking sheets half way through baking to ensure even baking.
Turn the oven off and leave in over night to ensure the meringues dry nicely.

Melt 1 cup (you may need more but this is a good start) of chocolate chips in a microwave or over a double boiler.
Spread melted chocolate over the bottom of the cap.  Dip the tip of the stem in the melted chocolate and press lightly onto the cap.

Place the mushrooms, caps down / stems up, on a parchment lined baking sheet.  When the chocolate sets, they will be stuck together.

Store at room temperature in a dry place or tin (do not refrigerate -- remember my humidity warning)

Makes about 40 mushrooms (depending on size).

I love serving these in a basket -- I hope you will too!

Also, and importantly, do you like my new logo?  I can't thank Deny at Growling Dog Design enough for all her help in designing my logo, business card and sticker for the back of my cookies!


  1. Love the new logo (and the mushrooms - delish)!

  2. how about the substrate used to grow oyster is only straw they grow out of or any other way

    magic mushroom kits