Friday, November 16, 2007

M&M (Marble and Meringue)

I have been slackening in my postings, I know that, as I've been asked frequently by friends, 'how come no updates?'. Haha. Well, haven't been feeling too good as the arthritis has been acting up, and have hindered a lot of my leg movements. I'm not sure if the weather is to be blamed. And also, it IS the time of year when many things are happening, being near Christmas and all, year end graduation concerts, school holidays - time to meet up with friends, and birthday parties every weekend(!), so won't have as many updates as other times of year as have not got much free time to be sitting in front of the mac. But first of all, I feel very guilty that I have not sent out the cookies for the cookie exchange which I have signed up for in the forum that I am in. I mean my sender has already got my cookies on the way over to me and I have only baked mine last night! It sounded fun when I signed up but how was I to predict that I would be in this state? I don't think the cookies will be late, but since I am only mailing them out these couple of days, I can't opt for surface mail which will take 2 months to arrive, as informed by the post office! So if I do participate again next year, will have to mail them in October! Yikes!

So anyways, enough of ramblings... a couple of days back, I left a block of butter out to soften in the morning and was out the whole day... now where did I go... hmmm... every day passes in a blur. After coming back in the evening, had to quickly prepare dinner and all the time the butter was staring at me. After princess was all ready for bed with daddy tucking her in, I still did not know what to do with the butter. Had intended to bake something but as it was getting late, was panicking and didn't want to put it back in the fridge. Did not want to do a full chocolate recipe so looked through my bookshelf and spied the cookbook that mum had given me a couple of years back. She got it from Cold Storage like free when you spent a certain amount of $. Flicked through and decided to do the marble cake as it called for a full block of 225g butter. One huge mistake I made was that I was too lazy to clean up the Chef so I used manual labour. Taking pointers from a forum pal, Josh, who said that the important thing about butter cakes is that you cannot let the mixture curdle or the cake will not be fluffy soft, gosh, I was spooning like a spoonful each time and you do the math with 4 egg whites. Sheesh. And on top of that, there was the cup of milk to spoon in as well. By the time the cake was cooled, it was past 12 am, but thankfully there was a 2hr episode of Amazing Race on that night, and the first country they visited was Ireland! :P

I also made some meringues yesterday with chocolate chips. Baked them for a couple of hours so that they would dry up on the inside and not be marshmallowy soft. The thing about meringues is that they have to baked super slow on very low temperature to avoid getting them brown. The first batch I made were a disaster. They were baking really nicely till I hung up a tea towel on the oven rack and probably turned up the heat on the oven by accident! While wrapping birthday presents, the room was suddenly filled with this sweet smell, and when I went to look in on them, they were all browned!!! Gosh! Waste of my effort so I took a break and started again in the evening. This time I was very careful, as they had to turn out perfect. The result is a highly addictive meringue, very light and crunchy. I love the lovely sheen on them.


Ingredients -

2 egg whites
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp cream of tartar
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
chocolate chips (amount to your fancy)

Method -

1. Preheat oven to 110 deg C (225deg F). Line 2 cookie sheets with foil.

2. In a large glass or metal mixing bowl, beat egg whites, salt and cream of tartar to soft peaks. Add vanilla. Gradually add sugar, continuing to beat until whites form stiff peaks. Add chocolate chips and fold in. Drop spoonfuls 1 inch apart on the prepared cookie sheets.

3. Bake for 1-1/2 hrs in preheated oven (I think mine was at least 2hrs in oven). Meringues should be completely dry on the inside. Do not allow them to brown. Turn off oven. Keep oven door ajar, and let meringues sit in the oven to completely cool. Loosen from foil with metal spatula (I find I didn't have to use spatula, just peeled them gently off the foil, they came out beautifully). Store loosely covered in cool dry place for up to 2mths.

Last evening, we had gone to Carrefour and saw this tiramisu selling for half price. Was $3-something. The use by date is the end of this month so bought one to try. I don't really fancy is as it is way too sweet. The alcohol in it is very strong, but unless you love really sweet stuff I wouldn't recommend it. Ok, time to make my own... probably for Christmas dessert. :)


lilltots said...

hi Deb
I am keen to try the meringues...look so nice..maybe to TA bday. I plan to make the cake, like I usually do, and u know choc is the only thing I know...ha ha..wil have to b creative this yr to make my choc cake attractive.
yr marble cake looks nice too.

singairishgirl said...


Ya, try it today! It's so easy. Hehe. But you have to have a few hours to spare.

Marble cake turned out well in the cupcake holders but the main loaf one was a little crumbly.

lilltots said...

ya lah...boy do I miss my SAHM days. Esp when I took half day n brot TA to the movies...really made me happy to enjoy the time wz her like that. Hubby said must do that more so that I will be happy. Also take leave n jalan wz the SAHM gang!

lilltots said...

BTW was the tiramisu nice?

Jori said...

Sorry to hear the joints have been giving you some trouble... must be the rainy weather. (My neck's been bugging me...stupid snow.) I wondered why you haven't been updating...
The meringues look great - hmmm...time to start the Christmas baking....

Little Corner of Mine said...

Your schedule is really tight and why all the birthdays have to fall at the end of the year huh?

singairishgirl said...

lilltots - Yes! Do come back to join our SAHM gang soon! At the rate you are taking leave, please leave soon. Haha. The tiramisu very sweet lah.

Jori - I know... it must be the cold weather. What about your neck.Yes, the meringues very addictive... all gone now. lol.

little corner of mine - You tell me! I also can't understand why all her classmates are born end of year!

Sue Sue said...

Your meringue is so nice and I am so tempted so try out.Izzit very sweet?

singairishgirl said...

sue sue - Must try, must try. Not too sweet or else you can cut down sugar or try use non-sweet chocs. Very addictive and nice.

Maya said...

I never had a chance to taste crunchy meringues...this I MUST try! Noticed tht ur recipe contains lesser sugar than most of E other recipes I ve seen; which is good.

singairishgirl said...

maya - have to try! But it's only crunchy if you have patience to bake it for hours. Ya, I know. 1/2cup is good because the choc chips will be slightly sweet too. Gonna bake another batch soon. ;) But remember not to double the recipe first time as it does yield loads even though it doesn't sound like it does.

trevshanhann said...

Yes maringues look yummy... going to try it and will let you know how !

singairishgirl said...

trevshanhann - They not only look, but they taste yummy too. Try it try it!