Lemon Meringue Nests

Meringues are my go-to recipe to use up leftover egg whites (from the Green Tea Mille Crepe). I could use them for macarons, but they take too much time 😛 Can’t go wrong with the classic meringue ratio, 1 part egg white to 2 part sugar. Add in some lemon curd craving and here’s the final product.
Meringues also take longer to bake in Singapore since it is so humid (I heard that it can even extend the baking time by a whole hour). These took around 3 hours to bake, and I let them cool overnight after turning the oven off, to make sure they are dried completely. The last thing you want is for a underbaked meringue to turn soggy, then harden and lose its light texture.
When making the lemon curd, make sure to taste and adjust for sweetness before you chill it in the fridge. Unfortunately I did not and found that it was too tart only after chilling. The only way to sweeten it at that point was to add in simple syrup, which changed the consistency. Eugenie Kitchen’s lemon curd is a good recipe though and yielded a great texture! I like how she used whole eggs instead of only egg yolks as I prefer a lighter lemon curd.
The downside is that they don’t last well in Singapore humidity, so make sure to eat them quickly or give them to friends. These are essentially just egg white foam and sugar, very light, and so very addictive for lemon-lovers!
Lemon Meringue Nests
makes 1.5 cups of lemon curd and 50 meringue cookies

Lemon Curd recipe adapted from Eugenie Kitchen

Freshly squeezed juice and zest of 2 lemons
2 eggs
1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
Pinch of salt
3 tablespoons (40g) unsalted butter, diced

Meringue recipe adapted from The Meringue Girls

100g egg whites
200g caster sugar
Pinch of salt

To make lemon curd:

In a stainless mixing bowl, add in the eggs, sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest, and salt. Whisk until combined.

Over simmering water (double boiler, aka bain marie), cook slowly until lightly thickened. Stir constantly. As the eggs cook, the mixture will thicken and turn light yellow.

Remove from heat when it coats the back of a spoon. Add in diced butter and stir until combined. As it cools, it will thicken more.

To make meringues:

Preheat oven to 100 degrees F (95 degrees C).

Place egg whites in a stand mixer (make sure it’s clean) fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk on low allowing bubbles to form, increase to high and continue whisking until stiff peaks form and you can turn the bowl upside down without the egg whites falling out.

Add one big spoonful of sugar at a time, ensuring that the whites come back to stiff peaks after each addition. Once all the sugar is added, continue to whisk for 5 – 7 minutes. You should be able to rub the mixture between your fingers and not feel any grit from the sugar. You know it’s ready to use when it forms a smooth shiny peak on the tip of your finger. Add a pinch of salt.

Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Place a dab of meringue on four corners of pan and press paper on top to hold it down flat. Pipe meringues on baking sheet, and bake for 2-3 hours until meringues can easily be lifted off parchment paper with bases intact. The inside should be dry as well. Let cool completely in the oven, preferably overnight. Store in airtight container. Pipe lemon curd to the centre on the day you serve them.

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