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Meringue Mice

Small black nonpareil candies for the eyes are sold in candy stores. Black mustard seeds may also be used; place these and the almond ears with tweezers. Or use a small round tip to pipe dots of melted chocolate for eyes and noses.

  • yield: Makes about 50

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Ingredients

  • 2 large egg whites, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • Pinch of cream of tartar
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 6 black licorice whips, each 28 inches long, cut into 3-inch lengths
  • 150 small black nonpareil candies (about 1 teaspoon)
  • 100 sliced unblanched almonds (about 1/2 cup)

Cook's Note

Store at room temperature in airtight containers up to 1 week.

Directions

  1. Step 1

    Position 2 racks in the oven, and preheat oven to 175 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper, and set aside. Fill a medium saucepan 1/4 full with water. Set the saucepan over medium heat, and bring water to a simmer.

  2. Step 2

    Combine the egg whites, sugar, and cream of tartar in the heat-proof bowl of an electric mixer, and place it over the simmering water. Whisk constantly until whites are warm to the touch and sugar is dissolved, about 2 minutes. Test by rubbing the mixture between your fingers.

  3. Step 3

    Transfer bowl to mixer stand; fit mixer with the whisk attachment. Starting on low speed and gradually increasing to high, beat egg-white mixture until stiff, glossy peaks form, about 10 minutes. Add vanilla, and mix until combined.

  4. Step 4

    Fit a pastry bag with a #803 Ateco tip, and fill it with the meringue. Pipe teardrop mice shapes onto prepared baking sheets by piping small blobs about 1 inch in diameter, with one pointed end (for the face). Pipe mice about 2 1/2 inches apart. Complete each mouse by inserting a 3-inch-long piece of licorice for the tail, small black candies for eyes and nose, and 2 almond slices for ears.

  5. Step 5

    Bake until mice are hard when gently tapped but still white, about 1 1/2 hours. Do not overbake, or they will crack and begin to brown. Transfer to cooling racks until room temperature.

Source
Martha Stewart Kids, Holiday 2001

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