Meringue Mushrooms

I had a question about the meringue mushrooms I did for my version of the holiday “pine cone” cake that wasn’t a pine cone. They’re really really easy. The recipe can be scaled up if you want more mushrooms.

1 egg white
1/8 tsp cream of tartar
1/4 cup sugar
1 tbsp dutch processed cocoa (optional)

Beat the egg white until frothy, then add the cream of tartar. Beat to medium peaks, then gradually add the sugar, beating to stiff peaks. If desired, add a tablespoon or so of cocoa for colour. Pipe into a variety of round and tall shapes on parchment paper. You’re piping the stems and tops of the mushrooms separately. A variety of heights of stems works well (between 1/4 and 1 inch tall, or so). Bake in a 200 degree Fahrenheit oven, for 1 hr. Turn the oven off and leave door closed for 1 more hour. You’re trying to dry them out more than you are cooking them. Store in an airtight container once cool & crispy.

Close to when ready to serve, take a paring knife and hollow out a small crevice in the middle of the bottom of the caps. This crevice should be about the width of your stems. Pipe a bit of ganache (for me, this was easy, I had some leftover from the biscuit roulade) into the crevice, and stick the stems into it. Don’t do this too far in advance, or your meringues will absorb the moisture from the ganache and start to get soggy. Dust the tops with some cocoa and/or icing sugar for ‘dirt’ & ‘snow’.

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