Party puds don’t come much easier and cheaper than these mandarin and chocolate meringues. You can make the meringues up to a week in advance and then fill with whipped cream and fruit, fresh or canned, and top with a grating of chocolate up to an hour before serving. We’ve used canned mandarins for an inexpensive winter fruit but in the summer when peaches, strawberries and raspberries are in season they make a great topping too. With raspberries, white chocolate grated over the top is particularly good. When grating chocolate use a bar that’s at room temperature as it’s less brittle than one straight from the fridge.
- 2 egg whites, at room temperature
- 100g caster sugar
- 300ml double cream
- 298g can mandarin segments in juice, drained
- 50g dark chocolate grated
Preheat the oven to 140°C/275°F/Fan 120°C/Gas Mark 1. Line 2 baking sheets with baking paper. Place the egg whites in a clean grease-free bowl and using an electric mixer whisk until stiff enough to form stiff peaks.
Add the caster sugar, 1tbsp at a time, whisking really between each addition until the meringue is thick, smooth and glossy. Place spoonfuls of meringue onto the lined baking sheets and spread a little to form round nests and bake for 1 hour until crisp on the outside but still slightly soft in the middle. They should come away from the baking paper easily without sticking.
Whip the cream until thick enough to form soft peaks. When the meringues are cool, spoon a little cream into each nest and place the mandarins on the top. Sprinkle over the grated chocolate.
Use the leftover egg yolks to enrich mashed potato instead of butter or add to omelettes or scrambled egg.