It's the most wonderful time of the year! I'm not talking about Christmas, although, that's a pretty fun time too. I'm talking about the time I absolutely revel in. You can have Winter, Summer and Spring. This is my time. The weather, the desserts, the football and of course family time at Thanksgiving. There is no better time than Fall or, Autumn, as some weird people call it. It has so much to offer. The flavors of fall are included in that category. Pumpkin, cinnamon, brown sugar, apple, and so on, yummm.... Well I decided I wanted to make something easy and quick, but something that would still fulfill my sweet tooth. These meringues really did the job. If you could eat the season in one bite, this is probably it. A meringue that has brown sugar, cinnamon and is topped with caramel drizzle. Am I speaking your language, yet? They're crispy on the outside, but chewy on the inside. These meringues have the best of both worlds. They are sweet and really hit the notes of Fall, but they're very light, so no guilt will be felt afterwards. If you could eat Fall air, these meringues are how it would taste.
It's important like with any meringue, to start with room temperature ingredients. If you don't have cream of tartar, you can substitute lemon juice.
Here's what you'll need to get started:
The egg whites and salt are not pictured, but are still obviously needed.
Start by whipping the egg whites and cream of tartar at medium high speed. Once tracks begin to form, gradually add in the granulated sugar.
Continue to whip until more voluminous. Slowly add in vanilla extract or paste. Slowly add in cinnamon and brown sugar. Whip until stiff peaks.
On a silicone mat lined cookie sheet, pipe out meringues with star tip. Not necessary, but it makes a better presentation. You can just spoon them on if you'd like.
Bake them at 225°F for an hour. Turn off the oven and leave the meringues in the oven for several hours.
Once out of the oven, drizzle your favorite caramel sauce on top. I'm using homemade caramel sauce, but you can use any that you like.
Move them to a plate and enjoy! These are great the same day, but I've found that they get even better texture-wise with time. Wait a day or two and the texture will be fabulous. Taste is just as great anytime.
See how I do it:
- ½ c granulated sugar
- ¼ c brown sugar
- 4 egg whites
- ⅛ t cream of tartar
- ⅛ t salt
- ½ t vanilla extract
- ¼ t cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 250 degrees.
Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or with a silicone mat sprayed with cooking spray.
In a bowl or electric mixer, on medium-high speed, beat the egg whites and cream of tartar until foamy and tracks begin to form. Add in the salt. Continue to beat. Lower to a medium-low speed and gradually add in the granulated sugar. Beat well, slowly add in the brown sugar and beat well.
Add the vanilla and cinnamon and beat at high speed until stiff and glossy.
Using a pastry tube fitted with a large plain or star tip, pipe the meringue in coils starting at the center and continuing to the outside of each circle. You can also just spoon them on there.
Bake about 1 hour, until cream colored and firm. Leave the meringues in the turned-off oven for several hours or overnight without opening the oven door.
When ready to serve, peel off the cookie sheets, drizzle with the caramel sauce and move to a wire rack.
The texture improves as they sit for a day or two as they'll crisp up.
You can use lemon juice instead of cream of tartar.