chocolate mint meringue kisses – a barely there cookie with a hint of mint
I’m in full Valentine’s mode this week! I’m wearing red, cooking with chocolate and kind of loving it! Must be the anticipation of the 50 Shades movie we’re going to see on Friday. Whoo hoo — date night! I may sneak some of these little chocolate mint metingue kisses into my bag to enjoy with the show.
I made meringues not too long ago, but those were the classic version. For this batch, I wanted something a little different and since it’s Valentine’s, it had to be chocolate. The mint addition is for Emily – one of her favorites!
What I like about these petite crisps is that they are so light and airy, but still have flavor. Real chocolate flavor — even though there’s not much chocolate in them.
And the mint — I didn’t skimp on the mint. A half teaspoon, which may not seem like much, but for 3 egg whites, believe me — works!
You should use a whisk attachment for your stand mixer or hand mixer if you have one — to get the most volume out of your meringue. Beat it until it’s smooth and glossy and holds a peak.
Then fold in the chocolate. I had never used a microplane grater on chocolate before and was amazed at how just a little bit of the bar turned into about a cup of whisper-fine chocolatey dust.
Since it was Valentine’s Day, I decided to be “fancy” and get out my pastry bag and tips. You can see from my results how often I use these tools — which is to say – seldom.
I used a different cooking method than I’m accustomed to. Normally, I bake meringues at 200? for 2 – 2 1/2 hours, but I’d seen methods that turned up the oven and cut the cooking time. I tried it. It worked — but the meringues were darker than I like. At a low oven, they stay white — or in this case white with chocolate flecks. I’ll leave it up to you as to which method you prefer.
Oh, and the chocolate drizzle? That was an afterthought, but it works. Just don’t store them until the chocolate has dried.
- 3 egg whites
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
- 1 ounce bittersweet chocolate, finely grated (I used 73% cacao)
- 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large bowl, with an electric mixer or stand mixer, whip the egg whites on high speed until light and frothy. Add the sugar and cream of tartar. Continue whipping on high speed until glossy and stiff. Add the peppermint extract and whip just a few more seconds to incorporate the extract into the egg whites. Gently fold the grated chocolate into the egg white mixture.
- Scoop the meringue into a pastry bag fitted with a large star tip.
- Pipe the meringue onto the parchment paper into 1 - 1 1/2 inch stars. Bake for 25-30 minutes until meringues are crispy -- and not soft. Test them by cooling the meringue for a minute, then tasting. They should be crisp all the way through. Let meringues cool on the pan.
- Meanwhile, melt the remaining chocolate in a microwaveable bowl by nuking it at 50% power in 10-15 second increments. Stirring between each interval until chocolate is melted.
- Drizzle melted chocolate over the meringues and let chocolate set before transferring to a airtight container to store for up to 3 days.