Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Get out your oven mitts!

This post is the rarest of Fun Lane posts: a baking post.

Those who know me best know that there are two things I cannot do
1. golf
2. bake/cook

Ok, I am pretty sure there might be a few more than 2 things on that list, but for the sake of my pride let's just leave it at that.

But one thing has been driving me to near insanity lately and that is driving half way across town at least twice a week to pick up my favorite cookies at my favorite bakery.

I discovered the chocolate meringues at Duchess a few months back and I am fully addicted. Like really addicted. And those of you who have graced the doorway of Duchess understand why my pocket book is feeling a little put off by this love affair. So I had to take matters into my own hands, which meant breaking out the bake ware and actually trying to come up with my own recipe!

So if you are wondering why these little mounds of delight are creating such a stir, just follow this easy recipe (even I can do it, so imagine what yours will taste like!).

The ingredients you will need are:
4 eggs
chocolate chips

To start take your eggs and seperate the whites from the yolks. Let the whites sit out until they are room temperature (you won't need the yolks). While they are warming up I take some sugar (1/4 cup for every egg white so in this case 1 cup) and put it in the food processor. I like the meringue to be like silk so this really makes the fine grains even finer.

Once the whites are room temp I blend them with the whipping attachment on medium until the whites look foamy. Then you slowly start adding the sugar.

Some recipes add other stuff to get the texture really thick, but with the Kitchenaide mixer I have no problems getting them fluffy and stiff. Once the mixture can hold a peak add just a touch of vanilla extract.

This is where the recipe goes from average to amazing! I take a half cup of chocolate chips and put them in the food processor as well so that they are little crumbs.

I mix it all together for just a second then spoon (or use a baggie with the tip cut off) to swirl them onto a Silpat sheet. You can use aluminum foil as well, but parchment paper really doesn't keep them from sticking.
Place the sheet into a preheated 250 degree oven for about an hour and 40 minutes. I like to let them sit in the oven once I shut it off to let them get a smidge crunchier, but at the same time have a bit of a gooey centre (I don't like solid, rock hard meringues).
And voila you are about to taste pure magic!

Also a bit magical were these branches I spied outside today. I hadn't seen them in the yard last year so it was a pleasant surprise.

And speaking of the yard my mom and I went to our all time most inspiration place ever today, Wellington Garden Centre, and left with tons of great ideas, plants and accessories. Which has now spurred an intense desire to replace our old front door with a spify new double door. But Sean says he might have to do a little thinking on that before we make any major purchases (or holes in the wall). But regardless I bought some lovely box woods for the huge urns and two chandeliers to hang above each one.

Yeah, it takes some imagination to get at what I've envisioned, so new doors or not I will still share the urns and lights~
But until then, enjoy a little crunchy, goo-ey treat.


Room to Inspire said...

These look wonderful - I can't wait to try them myself (as soon as our oven is fixed...note to self and others, don't ever auto-clean your oven)!


Amber said...

WOw I am SO impressed! I am terrible baker!And your kitchen is ADORABLE!

Magic Brush said...

Must be something with us painters... I can cook at all either. I put on my Magic Brush facebook page the other day "it's a good thing I can paint cuz' I can't cook" with a picture of the cookies I attempted to make. I used powdered sugar instead of flour. Go figure.

Linda @ Painted Whyte said...

Wellington Garden Centre is also my most favorite place - i visit all the time and always leave with something - with my unemployed budget i usually just leave with some soap but they have the nicest soap EVER!!! I live a couple blocks away from Duchess and i have never been. I am actually scared cause can you imagine how often you would have to go if you had a five second drive or a 5 min walk to Duchess... i think i would go every single day and that would be bad, weight wise and financially. I will forsure try your version of the cookie - safer i think right?

Susan said...

I love Meringues! I thought it was harder than this though...
Thanx for sharing! I am making this soonest!

Hello My Pretties said...

Love those pink braches too :D


Lynda @ Happenstance Home said...

Sounds delicious! Can't wait to see your urns and chandeliers. I'm going to be working on my urns today as well! Happy gardening!

Liz said...

Oh. My. Gosh. I'm kinda scared to go home after work because I know I have all the ingredients to make those meringues and I might get just as addicted to them as you are.

I've already made two of these in the past 3 weeks...


I'm starting to grow a big ol' sweet tooth.

Gina said...

Well hot damn I have all those ingredients in the house! :) Except the pretty flowers and cleaned off counters lol. Looks fabulous!

Laura Ingalls Gunn said...


Please stop by an enter my French Basketeer tote giveaway.

Mrs. Chic said...

Looks so yummy, I love the pics too! :)

Jenski said...

Yum! I made these at the holidays this year and they are great. (Don't try to add oily extracts like peppermint though, because then the egg whites don't whip up correctly.)

christine said...

Hi Holly! I had to pop in as a fellow Edmontonian and say love your blog, LOVE Duchess Bake shoppe and NEED to try this recipe!!

Thanks for all the goodness!
p.s. on a totally unrelated note.. Did you ever work at the WEM Gap, I think we worked together waaay back when.

m said...

hey holly....
i must admit i was in line behind you at duchess today....and for fear of coming across like a crazy blog stalker, i didn't come up and say hello (because although i may feel like i know you from your blog, you clearly wouldn't know me from adam!). However, i did think back to this post and chuckle a bit to myself! :) hope you enjoyed your rainy day. i am currently gorging myself on macaroons while my little one runs amuk.

Rhiannon Nicole said...

These photos are so so beautiful. And I have those Anthro mugs too :) Mine spell out LOVE! XO

Krystal Wight Armstrong said...

I came back to this post because I'm thinking of making little cellophane bags of them for Christmas gifts to family (homemade treats work nicely when you're kinda still a poor married-student!).
Anyway, I made these from your recipe once awhile back, and I cannot believe I never came back to comment on how truly amazing they really were! I'd never had a meringue before, and these were awesome; thanks for the great recipe/tutorial!
I'm thinking of trying to make some red and green ones...does anyone know how food coloring would workout with these? And I'd love to make some mint chocolate ones, but Jenski mentions peppermint oil is bad, anyone know another method to add the flavor....Chopped up candycanes maybe? I know the texture is sortof a delicate balance, so I wanted to ask advice first. Thanks again so much!

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