Vacherins with Raspberry Curd and Chantilly Cream

For some reason I was in the mood to make vacherins, so I made them heart shaped for Valentines Day. The meringues are a good vehicle to house raspberry curd and whipped cream. If you are not feeling ambitious, you can fill your meringues with raspberry sorbet or your favorite flavor of sorbet, and top with the cream, just make your meringues a little bit bigger. For the purposes here I made 8 small vacherins. Either way, they are delicious. Make sure to give yourself an extra day to make the meringues so they have time to fully dry and harden.

Valentines Day Vacherin 3

Filling Vacherins

Filling Vacherins 2

Piped Vacherins 2 one last picture to show how pretty they look before going into the oven…..

Heart Shaped Vacherins with Raspberry Curd & Chantilly Cream

Raspberry Curd

recipe: adapted from all recipes.com

yield: makes 1  1/2 Cups

one bag frozen (12 oz.) raspberries, thawed

3/4 Cup sugar

4 lg. egg yolks

1 stick (1/2 Cup) unsalted butter, cubed

pinch of salt

1 tsp. fresh lemon juice

1 Tbsp. cornstarch + 1 Tbsp. water (cornstarch is not typ

Thaw the berries in the bag overnight in the fridge or over a couple of hours at room temp. Press the berries through a strainer to remove any seeds and save all the juice and any pulp and place in a 3 quart saucepan.  Mix the cornstarch and water to make a slurry and set aside. To the berry juice in the saucepan, add the rest of the ingredients: sugar, yolks, butter, salt and lemon juice. . Over medium heat whisk the curd until it becomes thickened. Add in the cornstarch slurry and continue to cook for another 5 minutes until curd becomes thick. Cover with plastic and chill until firm and ready to use.

Chantilly Cream

1 Cup heavy whipping cream, well chilled

1 Tbsp. granulated sugar

1 tsp. vanilla

Place the ingredients in a bowl and whisk until soft peaks. Chill until ready to use.

Tips about egg whites & making meringue:

* Always separate your egg whites with cold eggs; it’s much easier with cold whites.

* Always separate your egg whites into one small “clean” bowl and then transfer each white to a designated bowl. One tiny drop of yolk can “contaminate” your whites and they will not whip if any fat is in the mix.

* One large egg white usually measures about 34-35 gms (if you prefer to use “liquid whites”)

* If you are making a large batch (of anything) that requires egg whites, you might want to consider buying “liquid whites” in the carton to avoid having to separate a lot of whites and also to avoid having a lot of leftover yolks.

* Always whip whites with room temperature whites. To speed up the process you can place your whites in a clean glass measuring cup and place the cup carefully into a larger bowl of hot water, and let sit for about 15 minutes, changing out the water as necessary with fresh hot water.

* Make sure the bowl you are whipping whites in is very clean.

* To achieve a clean bowl, wipe bowl several times with a paper towel that has been dampened with a couple of tablespoons of white vinegar, then wipe bowl dry.

Vacherins:

3 Lg. egg whites (or 105 gms of liquid whites), room temperature
3/4 Cup sugar
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
1/8 tsp. cream of tartar

dark pink or red food coloring (optional)

1.  Prepare a parchment sheet of paper by drawing hearts with a pen to desired size. Turn paper over and place on a baking sheet.

2. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F.

3. In a small bowl whisk the sugar and cornstarch until combined. In a bowl of a stand mixer or large bowl whip the egg whites (with the whisk attachment) until foamy; about 1 minute. Add the cream of tartar and whip until soft peaks form. Add in the sugar a few tablespoons at a time and continue whipping until stiff peaks form. Add in the optional food coloring and continue to whip. Place the meringue in a prepared piping bag fitted with a plain circle tip and pipe onto prepared sheet. Start by piping a base of meringue the shape of a heart. Pipe concentric “walls” of  heart shapes over base leaving the interior free. Place sheet in a 200 degree oven and bake for 3-4 hours until meringues have become firm and dry. Turn off the oven and let meringues sit in oven until cool or even overnight.

4. Fill cooled meringues with raspberry curd and chantilly cream. Garnished as desired.



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