I will keep this post brief but wanted to share with you the dessert that I made for my mum and my family for our Mother’s Day dinner this year.
If you know me at all, you know what a huge rhubarb fan I am, and the forced rhubarb is is season now. Initially, I planned to bake a rhubarb cheesecake, but as time was running away with me yesterday I decided to make a meringue based dessert, and use some bits and pieces that I already had knocking about the kitchen.
My mum isn’t such a big rhubarb fan but loves meringue and she loved the combination. And it *was* my Mother’s Day too! 😉
If you feel like playing with the flavours then be my guest. Don’t bother with the orange zest if you don’t have it, or try some lime; try an orange curd not lemon; change the nuts to slivers of almonds, or leave them out altogether; it’s pretty flexible and recipes like this are meant to be open to change to what makes *you* happy.
Also, as an aside, I didn’t make my own Lemon Curd on this occasion. I already had some in the fridge and it was Mother’s Day, why give myself even more work?
Rhubarb and Pistachio Meringue Roulade with Orange and Lemon
400g of Rhubarb
50g of Caster Sugar
5 Large Egg Whites (if you are making your own lemon curd then the yolks will come in handy)
275g of Caster Sugar
25g of Pistachios, chopped
300ml of Double Cream
200g of thick Greek Yogurt
The zest of 2 Oranges
80g of Lemon Curd
Clean, dry and chop the rhubarb into 2″ or 5cm pieces, sprinkle with the 50g quantity of Caster Sugar, and roast in an oven for 10 minutes at 200C. The Rhubarb should be cooked but not completely broken down. Place it in a sieve over a larger bowl so that the excess juice drains away. [This juice can be reduced and makes a lovely Rhubarb syrup for yogurt, creamed rice or even a cocktail.] It will cool whilst you make the meringue.
Turn your oven to 220C or 200C (fan) and line a large (33x23cm) baking tray with a silicone mat or sheet of baking paper.
Whisk the Egg Whites until they are stiff then add the Caster Sugar a dessert spoon at a time whilst still whisking.
Once fully incorporated spread it evenly over the covered oven tray to about 28cm by 18cm and sprinkle with the Pistachio nuts.
Bake for 5 minutes then turn the oven down to 160C or 140c (fan) and bake for another 15 minutes.
When it comes out of the oven turn it out onto another sheet of baking paper and allow to cool completely (this won’t take long). The Pistachios will be toasted and darker (this only brings out their flavour more in my opinion).
In the mean time, whisk the Double Cream until his holds its shape (be careful not to over whip as I have done too many times), then gently mix through the Greek Yogurt and the Orange Zest. If by adding the Yogurt it becomes too soft again, give it another quick whisk.
Once the Meringue is cold, spread the cream and yogurt mixture over the underside (the side facing up at this point, that doesn’t have any nuts on it).
Then drizzle over the Lemon Curd and scatter the Rhubarb (which will be soft so handle gently) on top (see below).
Now comes the moment to be brave. Using the baking paper underneath the Meringue roll it up. Have the roulade in front of you with the short 18 (ish cm because it will expand in the oven) side running left to right and the long 28cm side running away from you. Does that make sense? It should look tall and narrow when looking down on it from above?
Don’t worry. Some of the nuts will ping off and the roulade will most probably crack a little as you roll it up. But it’s OK and you can always dust some icing sugar over it if you are super concerned about its appearance.
Rest it on a plate and keep chilled until ready to be eaten. I think it is best after it has rested for at least a couple of hours.
The outside will be a little chewy and the inside of the meringue will be fluffy and soft. The flavours are a mixture or sharp, tart and sweet, but it is light enough to enjoy at the end of a meal. It may not be the prettiest or neatest bake that you will ever make but it’s delicious, in season (just now) and a great way of using up some zest or curd.