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Mini Peppermint-Meringue Cups With Ganache

To give these cups their festive design, paint lines of red gel-paste food coloring up the inside of an empty pastry bag before adding the meringue.

  • prep: 25 mins
    total time: 2 hours
  • yield: Makes 32

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Ingredients

  • For the meringue cups:
  • Vegetable oil cooking spray
  • 3 large egg whites, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
  • Red gel-paste food coloring (sugarcraft.com)
  • For the ganache:
  • 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • Garnish: 1 large candy cane, finely chopped

Directions

  1. Step 1

    Preheat oven to 175 degrees. Trace 16 circles onto each of 2 pieces of parchment using a 1 3/4-inch round cookie cutter, spacing about 2 inches apart. Coat 2 baking sheets with cooking spray, and top each with a sheet of parchment, traced side down.

  2. Step 2

    Make the meringue cups: Heat egg whites and sugar in a heatproof bowl of a mixer set over a pan of simmering water, stirring, until sugar dissolves and mixture is warm to the touch, about 3 minutes. Transfer bowl to mixer. Whisk on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form. Beat in peppermint extract.

  3. Step 3

    Using a small food-safe paintbrush, paint 3 stripes of red food coloring up the inside of a pastry bag fitted with a 1/4-inch plain round tip. Transfer egg-white mixture to pastry bag; pipe coils to fill each traced circle. Pipe up sides of each to create 3/4-inch- to 1-inch-high cups.

  4. Step 4

    Bake until meringue cups are crisp but not browned and lift off parchment easily, about 1 hour 30 minutes. Transfer meringue cups to a wire rack, and let cool completely.

  5. Step 5

    Meanwhile, make the ganache: Transfer chocolate to a heatproof bowl. Bring cream to a gentle simmer in a small saucepan over medium heat. Pour over chocolate, and let stand for 2 minutes. Stir until smooth. Cover loosely with plastic wrap, and cut a small slit in the top. Refrigerate until firm, 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes.

  6. Step 6

    Stir ganache, and transfer to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/4-inch open-star tip. Pipe ganache into the center of each meringue cup. Garnish with candy cane.

Source
Martha Stewart Living, December 2010

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Reviews (10)

  • Sammi2shoea 19 Dec, 2013

    Great concept bad recipe. First time bakers be cautious. The meringues turned out better with this recipe: 4 egg whites at room temp beaten with 1/4 tsp cream of tartar.

    When piping remember to give the swirl enough height. And there is way too much cream to chocolate in the ganache. Even though I used 8 oz of choco and left it in the fridge over night to harden it did not turn out at all! The piped edges simply disappeared in seconds leaving a flat and sloppy chocolate topping on my gorgeous meringues.

    So disappointing! Without extra chocolate on hand, it was ruined. Putting them in the freezer helped them to harden up again. Next time I will revert back to a trusted ganache recipe: 6 oz choco and 1/2 c cream.

  • Happy_Birthday_Dr_Seuss 20 Jan, 2013

    Mini Peppermint-Meringue Cups With Ganache
    Russell's Sunday Dinner
    Nutritious and Delicious!

  • Margo S 14 Dec, 2012

    My first batch of these didn't turn out AT ALL. Nothing worked so I went to my mom's cookbook and read about meringues. I used that recipe instead: 4 egg whites, 1 cup confectioner's sugar&1/8 tsp cream of tar tar. My mom also recommended chilling the bowl/mixer before using them. When I used that recipe, they were stiffer and much easier to make into the cups. :) I cooked them at 200 for 2 hours.
    The ganache took all night in the refrigerator to harden enough to use.... These changes helped :)

  • eleanor23 24 Aug, 2012

    KarenSR, to make the egg whites stiff, make sure of two things:
    a. That the bowl and utensils are free from ANY grease or oil.
    b. That no amount of egg yolk, however tiny, gets in your egg whites. The egg yolk is greasy and if even a minuscule amount gets in, the entire batch will be ruined. The same goes for grease (butter, oil, Pam, etc.) on utensils.

  • nancyschotters 15 Dec, 2011

    To firm up the meringue, add 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar and 1/8 teaspoon of salt and beat for a long time! It worked for me after this change.

  • Bonnie2chefs 14 Dec, 2011

    I'm a baker, as in owning a bakery, the formula for this recipe leaves a lot too be desired. I baked on a dry day and ended up using a confection oven with a 200 degree setting to dry these. The filling had to much cream for the amount of chocolate used, in the end I used 12oz of chocolate for a proper consistency. how disappointing this has to be for first timers.I now will always have second thoughts about using recipes from this site.Sorry , because this is such a neat idea.

  • KarenSR 14 Dec, 2011

    I was not able to get the whites stiff enough. I tried TWICE. I made sure the bowl was clean; it's not raining.... what am I doing wrong? How do I ensure that the whites will stiffen?

  • jmcfarland82 11 Dec, 2011

    To anyone else who hasn't made meringue cookies before: Make these the day you plan to serve them. The moisture from the ganache will absorb into the meringue overnight and your efforts will be wasted.

  • hotbaker 5 Feb, 2011

    use equal amounts of chocolate to heavy cream (8oz cream/ 8oz chocolate)

  • bgros 31 Dec, 2010

    Loved the flavor; however, my ganache did not firm up as expected. Any suggestions as to what went wrong? Followed recipe precisely.