Bella and I made these adorable ghost meringues yesterday. Surprisingly, they weren't as difficult as I imagined they would be. I thought the high altitude might make trouble for my egg whites, but with a few minor adjustments, they worked out really well. The trick to making your meringues really white and crisp is baking them at a low temperature for a really long time.
Bella licked a bit too much raw egg white for my liking. That girl just doesn't listen when a beater covered in anything sweet is in front of her. I guess we can all get paranoid about raw eggs once in awhile. It was fine though.
I could use a bit of practice piping these ghosts. I would have like to make them a bit taller but for my first try they are really cute. The recipe calls for mini chocolate chips for the eyes but my ghosts are much smaller and the chocolate jimmies worked well. This way I could angle them into angry eyes or make them straight for dopey looking eyes.
The recipe is from Sticky, Chewy, Messy, Gooey, Treats for Kids by Jill O'Connor. This is becoming my very favorite cook book for sweets. You know it's a good cookbook when the pages are sticking together from bits of this or that getting splattered on the pages during use. My copy is getting really sticky!
6 egg whites at room temp
1/2 tsp cream of tartar (I used 1/4 tsp at high altitude)
pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup fine granulated sugar (I took out 1 Tbsp)
1 cup powdered sugar (Bella spilled some on the floor, it was about 1 Tbsp)
Chocolate jimmies (sprinkles)
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and place the racks in the middle and upper portions of the oven. Use a Silpat or parchment paper on your baking sheets
Beat your egg whites and cream of tartar in a metal bowl until frothy, Add the salt and beat at med-high speed until soft peaks form. Add the vanilla.
While beating add the granulated sugar 1 Tbsp at a time and beat until stiff glossy peaks form. Remove the bowl from the mixer and sift the powdered sugar over the meringue. Gently fold in the sugar to the meringue just until there aren't streaks of sugar. Don't over fold.
Spoon the meringue into a piping bag with a large round tip or cut the end of a Ziploc bag. Pipe the ghosts on your baking sheets as if you are forming soft serve ice cream cones. I used a bit of a swirl motion to create a larger base and then smaller on top. Add your jimmies for eyes (this is rather tedious).
Bake for two hours and then turn off the oven and let the ghosts cool in the oven for two more hours or overnight. Keep in an airtight container for a week!