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Walnut Dacquoises with Honey-Walnut Ice Cream

In these individual desserts, disks of meringue are flavored with a mix of walnuts and cinnamon and then used to sandwich ice cream. A warm sauce of honey and cooked apples blends in with a scoop of vanilla as it melts.

  • servings: 8

Ingredients

For the Ice Cream

  • 3 ounces chopped walnuts (1 cup)
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 quart vanilla ice cream or nondairy ice cream or sorbet, slightly softened

For the Walnut Meringues

  • 8 ounces chopped walnuts (2 1/2 cups)
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar

For the Apples

  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter or nondairy margarine
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 3 Fuji apples, peeled, quartered, cored, and cut into 1/8-inch-thick slices

Directions

  1. Step 1

    Make the ice cream: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Toss walnuts with honey and salt on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and spread evenly. Bake, stirring every 3 minutes, until nuts are toasted and crisp, 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool.

  2. Step 2

    Fold honeyed walnuts into ice cream or sorbet in a bowl. Freeze until just firm, at least 1 hour (or up to 3 days; soften slightly before serving.)

  3. Step 3

    Make the meringues: Raise oven temperature to 375 degrees. Pulse walnuts, sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a food processor until nuts are finely ground.

  4. Step 4

    With a mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg whites with cream of tartar until stiff peaks form. Fold walnut mixture into whites in 2 additions.

  5. Step 5

    Using a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain pastry tip (such as Ateco #806), pipe walnut mixture into sixteen 2 1/2-inch rounds on parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing them 1 inch apart.

  6. Step 6

    Bake, rotating sheets halfway through, until deep gold, 14 to 16 minutes. Let cool completely on sheets on a wire rack. (Meringues can be stored in an airtight container for up to 2 days.)

  7. Step 7

    Make the apples: Bring honey to a boil in a medium saute pan over medium-high heat. Cook until amber and fragrant, about 4 minutes. Add butter or margarine and salt, reduce heat to medium, and swirl pan until butter melts. Add apples, and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 5 minutes. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes.

  8. Step 8

    Assemble dacquoises: Place 1 meringue, flat side up, in each dish. Top with 1 scoop of ice cream and some of the apple slices. Drizzle with sauce from pan. Top with remaining meringue, shiny side up. Serve immediately.

Source
Martha Stewart Living, April 2008