Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Do as I say (...and not as I do): apple and blackberry meringue

I've a backlog of things to share ( always). I was thrilled to be presented with a couple of blogging awards a week-or-so ago - I haven't forgotten about them and will post about them next. But I've got a folder full of of cooking to share too so thought that this should be a recipe post.

This is a pudding that reminds me of when I was small. 'Apple snow' was something that my mother used to make - she reminded me of it recently when she cooked it for my nephew and niece. It is simplicity itself to make - lovely, comforting stewed apple on the bottom and crisp, crunchy meringue on top.

At least, that is what it is like when my mother makes it. I made a slightly less successful version due to my stupidity. I know full well that only cooking apples (Bramley) will do, but when I discovered that the local shop had run out I somehow managed to persuade myself that eating apples would do. How stupid.

Of course, they didn't cook down in the same way and whilst the pudding was tasty, it wasn't the 'apple snow' that I had been craving. I also decided to dabble with something that should be entirely simple and threw in some blackberries too. This was more successful, thankfully!

What you are looking for here is a crisp meringue rather than a marshmallow-y one. After cooking at a low heat, this was crisp on the outside but still quite soft and airy in the middle. I've seen other recipes that do things differently - they cook the meringue very quickly on a high heat, or even just bronze with a blowtorch. I like to do things like my mother said though. It tends to be best. She certainly would not have been foolish enough to opt for eating apples. She knows best, you see. Incidentally, my mother doesn't bother to stew the apples first - as the meringue cooks for a good hour, the apples stew naturally during this time.

Apple and blackberry meringue
(Serves 2)


2 cooking apples (Bramley)
1 small handful blackberries (optional)
juice and zest of half a lemon
2 egg whites
4 oz caster sugar
1 tablespoon caster sugar (less or more to taste)

1. Pre-heat oven to 150C. Peel, core and chop apples. Toss with a little caster sugar, the lemon juice and rind. Tip into a small ovenproof dish.

2. Whisk the egg white to stiff peaks, gradually adding the 4oz caster sugar as you get near the end. You should be left with a glossy mixture.

3. Pile the egg whites on top of the apples and then bake in the oven for around an hour.

4. Enjoy, perhaps with a little pouring cream.


Joie de vivre said...

Mmmm....that crunchy meringue with the soft apples. Yum.

Jules said...

I'd never think of putting meringue ontop of stewed fruits. It sounds delicious.

Margaret said...

Beautiful clouds of crisp meringue - I too use a low heat to make meringue topping (a tip I got from Delia).
Wonderful pudding Antonia.

Joanna said...

i love how you called it apple snow. that is the cutest name for food i've ever heard. haha. this looks really cool. i love warm apple slices. i'm starting to crave pie now. i can't think about apples without associating them with pie.

James said...

Who needs crumble when you can have meringue?

Loving Annie said...

The combination of apples and blackberries together sounds delightful !

And congratulations on the awards that you have recieved :)

Laurie said...

Your apple snow looks yummy, even with the wrong apples.

I'm wedded to my laptop too and use it to look up my own recipes all the time.

Rosie said...

Apple snow oh such memories came flooding back when i read your post. I haven't had this in years Antonia. Your apple and blackberry meringue looks gorgeous.

Rosie x

Sam said...

I love meringue, I've never heard of this before but it sounds really tasty.

Lucy said...

Mmmmm sounds and looks so yummy! I sometimes get bored with plain stewed apple..I think this would be an excellent substitute!

Antonia said...

Joie de vivre - thank you for dropping by!

Jules - I should try it with other stewed fruits actually... I think it would be good with anything that is naturally quite tart - gooseberries in the summer perhaps?

Margaret - thank you! I've always done meringue on a low heat - it seems to work best. And it is how my mother always does it and she is always right!!

Joanna - I guess we called it that as the meringue looks like snowy peaks, though a google search shows that 'apple snow' is actually the name for a totally different dessert which is more like an apple mousse.

James - I think I still prefer crumble, but this certainly makes for a nice change.

Annie - I love the combination of apple and blackberries whether it be in pie, crumble or just on its own with yoghurt - yum!

Laurie - thank you so much. It wasn't bad with the 'wrong' apples but I think cooking apples would have been better.

Rosie - thank you so much. It really reminded me of when I was small!

Sam - it is an unusual combination certainly, but I really like it!

Lucy - it is always good to ring the changes, I agree!

Katie said...

It looks wonderful. I would never have thought of baking meringue on top of the fruit.

Anonymous said...

Another one who wouldn't have thought of putting that combination together, it sounds delicious though - even if it wasn't just like you remember!

Jeanne said...

Apple snow! THat's so funny - there was a recipe for that in my first cookbook as a child - the "My Learn to Cook Book". I was fascinatd by it... but have never attempted it. You've inspired me though. I can think of all sorts of fruits that this would go with...