basil, raspberry and hazelnut meringues recipe

Basil, raspberry and hazelnut meringues

Served with summer fruit, these meringues are perfect for a party. Ideally, make one batch with hazelnuts, and another with basil, adding whole raspberries to some of each batch a wonderful splotch of pink through the white meringue.

makes about 10 × 8-10cm meringues

  • groundnut oil, for greasing
  • 4 egg whites
  • 110g granulated sugar
  • 110g caster sugar, plus a little more for the whipped cream
  • pinch of salt
  • grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 500g raspberries
  • 50g hazelnuts, chopped and toasted until golden, or a good handful of basil leaves, roughly chopped
  • 284ml carton of double cream

Preheat the oven to 110°C/gas mark ¼. Rub a trace of oil over a sheet of greaseproof paper and use to line a baking sheet. Alternatively, use oiled baking parchment or a silicone sheet.

Whisk the egg whites until stiff and really dry – longer than you would for any other recipe that includes whipped egg whites. Continue whisking while you add the granulated sugar, 1 tablespoonful at a time, until the whites regain their former stiffness.

Using a metal spoon, lightly fold in the caster sugar, salt, lemon zest, a small handful of raspberries and the hazelnuts or basil leaves, being careful not to knock out the air. Put tablespoonfuls of the mixture on to the prepared baking sheet and place in the oven for about 2 hours, until crisp but slightly gooey in the middle. Turn off the oven and open the door, leaving the meringues in it until completely cold.

When ready to serve, whip the double cream until thick. Add about 1 teaspoon caster sugar, or to taste. Use to sandwich the meringues together. Serve with the remaining raspberries.

This recipe appears on p.210 of Sarah's Food for Friends and Family cookbook.

Try this recipe with your own home grown raspberries – find out more in our guide on how to plant and grow raspberries. It's simple and easy, and you'll have lots of your tasty fruit throughout the summer months.