Wed 17 Aug 2011
These pretty little gems take two things that are good, plums and meringue, but putting them together gives a product that is greater than the sum of their parts.
Plums, meet egg whites. It may not seem like it now, but the two of you are going to be awesome together. You’ll be a perfect couple, trust me, I’m a great matchmaker. You do need a little sugar for sweetness, but once the egg whites are whipped into shape, these two get along together swimmingly.
I find these charming to look at; the deepness of color from the half plum, topped with a burnished cloud of squidgy meringue, is so darling.
Plums Under Meringue
(adapted from Peaches Under Meringue, Gourmet Magazine)Ingredients
2 Tbsp vanilla sugar (or plain old sugar if you don’t have any vanilla sugar around)
2 egg whites
pinch of saltDirections
Cut the plums in half, around the stone; remove the stone by loosening one end with the tip of your knife, and then pulling it out. Sprinkle a scant amount of sugar over the cut sides of the plums (~1/4 tsp each). Beat the egg whites with the pinch of salt (by arm or by mixer) until foamy. Sprinkle in the remaining sugar and continue to beat until you achieve high glossy peaks. Spoon the meringue into lofty peaks over the cut sides of the plums. Bake in a 400° oven until the meringue is a burnished golden color (4-5 minutes). Tuck in greedily.
What is extra lovely about these plums under meringue is that they feel like a dessert, but are actually pretty guilt free to snack on. That is, if you are the type to feel guilty about dessert, these are something to say yes to over and over again. I’ve never met a dessert I didn’t like, and tend to be unable to muster up guilt about having some. I imagine this methodology of spooning unctuous meringue over fruit could extend to other stone fruits easily: peaches, nectarines, apricots. Maybe even other fruits as well.
Mister says: Tangy and meringue-y, a nice summer treat.