Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Peppermint Chocolate Meringue Cloud Cookies

These Peppermint Chocolate Meringue Cloud Cookies are crunchy on the outside and light and airy on the inside. They are addicting because they are so delicious and light; it is hard to eat just one.

I don't know why I was ever intimated by meringue cookies. They truly are easy to prepare, if you have patience. Patience is needed not because they are difficult to prepare, but because you can't eat them right away. You need patience to give up your oven all day or overnight to let the cookies bake. Trust me, your patience will be rewarded. I tried a cookie after 2 hours and they weren't quite done, so I left them in the oven overnight. The next morning they were heavenly.

I didn't use food coloring because I prefer natural food ingredients when I have the choice, but if you eat with your eyes you can add a drop or two of red food coloring to the recipe when you add the peppermint extract. Enjoy!

Peppermint Chocolate Meringue Cloud Cookies
·4 egg whites, at room temperature
·1 tsp cream of tarter
·1⅓ cup sugar
·½ tsp peppermint extract
·1 cup mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350˚. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

In a kitchen stand mixer, beat egg whites until foamy. Add the cream of tarter and beat until fluffy, but not stiff. Slowly add sugar 3 TBS at a time. Continue beating until all sugar is added and well-incorporated. Add peppermint extract and beat until meringue is shiny and firm. It should form peaks. Gently fold in chocolate chips by hand.

Drop by full tablespoon onto baking sheets. Place in the oven and turn the oven off. Leave in the oven for at least 2 hours or overnight until cookies are crisp and dry. The meringue cookies will cook from the heat of the turned off oven.

Store in an airtight container.

Yield: 36-42 cookies.

Recipe slightly modified from Lynn's Kitchen Adventures