The New Bakers Dozen
chocolate meringues

The The Bakers Dozen: chocolate meringues
By Pattycakes (Pattycakes) on Monday, May 12, 2003 - 06:26 pm: Edit

I need help with my meringues. I get the stiff peaks on the whites (beaten in the copper liner or with cream of tartar) and when I fold in the coco (Valhrona) they deflate to an oozy mess. I also tried combining the sugar with the coco and adding that to the whites and still oozzy.

Help!! I am trying to make coco nests.

By Chefspike (Chefspike) on Monday, May 12, 2003 - 07:38 pm: Edit

try this, heat the whites up on hot water to the temp. of your wrist. stirring always. then whip.
and add more sugar then normal, and take a little longer to add the sugar, they won't fall.
then let them sit for a second before you add the the cocoa.
I think i remember something about the amount of cocoa should be no more than twice the amount of the sugar, but I'm not sure.
oh and forget the cream of tartar.
good luck.

By Tortesrus (Tortesrus) on Tuesday, May 13, 2003 - 09:08 pm: Edit

Dear Pastry Chefs and Bakers- I could really use some advice please.
I heard a while back that egg whites from fresh eggs did not increase in volume as much as older egg whites, when whipped for meringues. Then I read an article that stated the opposite- Would you please advise me on this? Thank you.

By Chefspike (Chefspike) on Tuesday, May 13, 2003 - 11:06 pm: Edit

In all my years, it never made a difference.
What did make a difference and only slightly was the temp of the whites.
It's all in the whipping baby!

By Tortesrus (Tortesrus) on Wednesday, May 14, 2003 - 08:06 am: Edit

Thank you for the information Chef Spike. It is very much appreciated.

By Ladycake (Ladycake) on Wednesday, May 14, 2003 - 11:12 am: Edit

I freeze my whites and have found that it adds a little to the stability. I use whites from my Crême Anglaise and freeze it overnight.

By Pastrycrew (Pastrycrew) on Wednesday, May 14, 2003 - 02:36 pm: Edit


A pretty standard dried meringue is 1:1:1

Granulated sugar, powdered sugar and egg whites.

If you leave the egg whites to room temperature you get a "quicker" whip and older egg whites give you more volume. The slower you whip a meringue the more stable it is as well because of the way the albumen reacts. Me, I pretty much have to use fresh cracked eggs right out of the fridge all the time, and that works.

With your meringues, it may be that you are over whipping your meringue. Once you start to incorporate your cocoa its possible that you've over mixed it and it just loses its structure, remember as you're mixing in your flavoring, you're still "whipping" them even by hand. The cocoa powder is a fat though, and this could break down the meringue, just be sure to work in small batches once you add in your cocoa. With any meringue product, the meringue will start to break down if you leave it unnattended too long.

The recipe above you add in the granulated sugar normally as you would for basic meringue. Once it is to stiff peaks you fold in the sifted powdered sugar (In this case, you would substitute up to 50% cocoa powder, but try it at 20% and see if that's "chocolate" enough for you.

Anyway, that's what I'd do.



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