Melt-In-Your-Mouth Meringue Kisses
4 large or extra-large egg whites, room temperature
½ teaspoon cream of tartar
½ cup superfine sugar (blitz granulated sugar in food processor for 30 seconds)
1 cup powdered sugar
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 200 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.
Make sure your mixing bowl and whisk or beater attachments are completely clean, as any grease or residue can prevent the egg whites from whipping properly.
Add the egg whites to your mixing bowl and beat on medium speed until foamy, about 30 seconds. Add the cream of tartar and beat on medium-high speed until soft peaks form, about 1 ½ to 2 minutes.
With the mixer on medium-high speed, slowly add the superfine sugar, one tablespoon at a time. Continue beating until the meringue is stiff and glossy and most of the sugar has dissolved, about 2 minutes.
Rub a little meringue between your fingers; if it is still gritty, continue to mix on medium-low speed until there is barely any sugar grain when you test it. Add the vanilla extract and mix on medium-low for 10 seconds.
Use a rubber spatula to fold in the powdered sugar, adding it in three stages so that the meringue doesn’t deflate. Gently fold the sugar into the meringue until fully incorporated.
If using food coloring or melted chocolate, fold in just 3 to 4 times lightly for a swirled effect, or fold in completely for a solid effect.
To pipe the kisses, transfer the batter to a piping bag fitted with a round or open star tip. Hold the tip straight above the parchment, squeeze gently and then release just before pulling up. Add candy sprinkles or chopped nuts now, if desired.
Place both baking sheets in the oven (top third and bottom third) and bake for 2 hours then remove cookies and let cool completely on baking sheet. Or bake for 1 hour, turn off oven and let cookies dry in oven overnight.
Once cooled, transfer the cookies to an airtight container and store at room temperature for up to 2 weeks, or freeze for several months.
- To keep the parchment paper from lifting up as you pipe, place a small dab of meringue under each corner of the parchment paper so that it will adhere to the baking sheet.