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Pineapple Mango Eton Mess

Someone just complained on my other blog about how I had too much sugar and fat in one of my recipes. Sorry folks, today’s post won’t be any better.

I first learned about Eton Mess while watching Nigella Lawson.  It of course, caught my attention because I have always had a thing for English schools with rich histories—my son wants to go to Oxford someday, and I confess it must be due to my own suggestion.  Anyway, she said it was a dessert they served at Eton College and was most likely something the boys created by throwing all their dessert food together in one bowl.  Traditionally, it is made with strawberries, cream, and more recently with crushed up meringues.  I thought it would be fun to make it with a different fruit today.  You could add any fruit you want.

It’s easy to make, even if you make the meringues from scratch.  The kids will love it because they can help in every step of creating it, and most importantly, it doesn’t have to be pretty.

Eton Mess

2 cups cut up mango and fresh pineapple
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
2 cups heavy cream
4 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon pure almond extract
meringue cookies, crushed (recipe follows)

1. In a small bowl, toss together the fruit and granulated sugar. Set aside

2. Whip heavy cream in a medium sized bowl with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Add in vanilla and sugar, and whip until well incorporated.

3. Fold in fruit and 3/4 of the meringue pieces. Spoon into serving dishes. Garnish with remaining meringue pieces.

Easy Meringues for Crushing into Eton Mess

2 egg whites at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
pinch of cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a hand mixer, whip egg whites until foamy. Whip in a tablespoon of the sugar with the cream of tartar. Little by little (a tablespoon at a time), add in the remaining sugar. Keep whipping until sugar dissolves (rub a bit of it between your fingers. You will know it’s dissolved when you can no longer feel any sugar granules).

2. If you want these to be pretty, you can either spoon out the mixture onto the parchment paper or you can place it in a piping bag and make star shapes. For Eton mess, though, simply spread the mixture onto the parchment paper about 1/2 inch think. Bake for 60 minutes (bake for 90 minutes if you made them pretty).

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