A gluten-free, small-batch sweet treat!
These pillowy little confections are so light and delicate it takes a lot of willpower to eat just one or two, but they are so flavourful you might find that one satisfies a sweet craving quite nicely. I love to make these when I’ve used egg yolks for other purposes, like making a mayonnaise-type sauce or lemon curd. If you put the leftover egg whites in a very clean glass container with a tight lid (a canning jar is ideal for this), you can store them for 5 or 6 days before making meringues. I’m often asked when teaching what purpose of cream of tartar serves in recipes like this. The science is complicated but the simple answer is that cream of tartar helps the egg whites whip to the greatest volume possible and then keeps them stable so they won’t deflate during baking. You can find salted caramel baking chips in most large grocery stores (and they are absolutely amazing) but you can easily substitute with chocolate chips, butterscotch chips or toffee bits if you prefer. If you find the salted caramel chips and fall in love with them, as I have, you might also want to make these oatmeal shortbread squares with them. Heavenly!
- 2 egg whites
- 1/8 teaspoon (.6 mL) salt
- 1/8 teaspoon (.6 mL) cream of tartar
- 1/8 teaspoon (.6 mL) vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup (60 mL) granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup (185 mL) salted caramel baking chips
- Preheat oven to 225F. Line a large baking tray with parchment paper and set aside.
- Put egg whites in a medium-sized bowl. Beat with an electric mixer for one minute, then add salt, cream of tartar and vanilla. Beat for 1 – 2 minutes longer until soft peaks form.
- Add sugar very slowly – about a tablespoon at a time – beating constantly. It should take you at least one full minute to make the sugar additions. Beat for 1 – 2 minutes longer until stiff peaks form.
- Gently fold in salted caramel chips until evenly distributed.
- Spoon the mixture into a large zippered food storage bag and seal. With scissors, snip off one corner of the bag, making an opening about 1/2 inch (1.25 cm) in size.
- Gently pipe the meringue mixture into mounds about 1 inch (2.5 cm) high onto the prepared baking tray, spacing about 1 inch (2.5 cm) apart.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 60 – 75 minutes, or until completely dry.
- Let cool completely then transfer to an airtight container. Store at room temperature for up to a week.
Makes approximately 30 small cookies.