I was doing this in advance of the show so could only guess the exact nature of the challenge. I know they have to make 24 and assume they would have to make eight each of three type,s or four each of six. I went for 3. I do not know how long they have but have timed myself to compare.
I made almond and raspberry meringue kisses, pistachio salambos (from one of the bake off books) and double chocolate madelines. The meringue post is below, I will post the other two items in the next couple of days.
They are all really really good, I am finding it hard to chose a favourite I keep changing my mind, Mark thinks the mini pistachio choux buns just edge into the lead.
Either way I am very very impressed with what I have achieved and Paul and Mary would be in trouble if they disagreed!
I am very excited about the bake off tonight, as always, but tonight will be better with a plate of these treats.
Almond and raspberry meringue kisses
makes 14-16 pairs
2 egg whites
pinch cream of tartar
1/2 tsp almond extract
100g caster sugar
pink food colouring (optional)
100ml double cream
2 tablespoons raspberry jam
First line a baking sheet with parchment paper, I actually used my silicon macaron sheet/guide but I suspect not everyone owns such a thing, and preheat the oven to 120C/100C FAN.
Put the egg whites in spotless grease free bowl, I use a metal one, along with the cream of tartar. Whisk until stiffish peaks are forming, add in half the sugar and almond extract and whisk until stiff glossy peaks are beginning to form before whisking in the rest of the sugar, you need nice stiff, shiny peaks but take care not to over beat.
I chose to paint a few stripes of food colouring on the inside of the piping bag but this is completely optional. Spoon the meringue mix into the piping bag fitted with a star tip.
Pipe teeny meringues into your prepared sheets. There are two ways to do it, either swirl it, the food colouring will give a spiral.
Or pipe straight down and you will get lines.
Bake in the oven for 1 hour to 90 minutes (I know, I know, its a broad range) until dry and crisp. Leave on the sheet until cool then gently peel away.
To fill whip the cream until soft peaks form then whisk in the raspberry jam. Pop the cream into a bag fitted with star tip and pipe a good star shaped dollop onto half the meringues. Sandwich with another meringue and eat!