As you may have noticed, I’ve been making quite a lot of meringue-based recipes lately. About three weeks ago, I started with an amazing Strawberry Mousse Cake with Candied Rhubarb Topping, for which I whipped up an Italian meringue to make sure it was super fluffy. And what about that perfect Angel Food Cake I made last week? It’s basically just a French meringue with a little flour added to it. That’s it! Meringue is so easy and versatile. And really, if you want to improve your baking skills, mastering the different kinds of meringue is a good starting point!
So yeah, here we are: the first post of a new series, titled: The Different Kinds of Meringue. Catchy title, right? Not. It’s SEO related, so just fogetaboutit… As you may know, a meringue is basically an egg white foam sweetened and stabilized with sugar. There are three different kinds of meringue: French meringue, Italian meringue and Swiss meringue. Because I made Italian meringue for the strawberry mousse cake and French meringue for the angel food cake, I thought we’d start this brand new series with a post on how to make Swiss meringue!
So get yourself some egg whites!
Oh, wait, I know what you’re thinking: what should I do with the yolks? I can totally relate to that… Who likes to throw away food, right? I don’t… And I certainly don’t like to buy two cartons of eggs just for the egg whites! I always feel bad for the yolks when that happens. So what do you do with the leftover yolks? Well, freeze them. Up until about two minutes ago I didn’t know it was possible, but one of my readers (Hi Kelster!) was kind enough to point out to me that it’s totally possible! The yolks just need a little prepping first. If you don’t prep the yolks before freezing, they become gelatinous and impossible to work with over time. To keep this from happening, beat the yolks with either salt or sugar. 1½ teaspoons of sugar or ⅛ teaspoon of table salt for every 4 yolks. After that, it’s just a matter of pouring the mixture into a plastic freezer bag and throwing it into the freezer.
Just don’t forget how many yolks are in a bag and whether you added salt or sugar. Write. It. Down.
As for me, I didn’t even need to freeze leftover yolks, because I had a freezer full of egg whites already… Egg whites, of course, freeze beautifully! You don’t even need to prep them. All you need to do is plop them in a plastic freezer bag and freeze them. It’s too easy. Whenever I make a recipe that calls for just yolks – such as um, ice cream or lemon curd – I freeze the whites. No exceptions. Sure, you could whip up an egg white omelet – because, um, yum! – or throw the whites in the thrash – tsk, tsk – but just imagine yourself opening the freezer one glorious Sunday afternoon and finding it full of frozen egg whites. Oh, the things you can make with a freezer full of egg whites!