These days, campfires and s’mores still rank high on my list, but I spend more time trying to figure out things like crème brûlée. So, my hubby upgraded me from one of those little cook’s torches to a professional one, you know the one that plumbers use to fuse copper pipes and stuff? It does a great job toasting marshmallow frosting. Everyone should get one. But, before you jet off to the home improvement store, there are a few things you should know:
*The small cook’s torches burn butane which can leave a bad after-taste. My plumber’s torch came with MAP/MAPP gas which is food safe, but might melt the stove. So better switch to propane.
*Have a fire extinguisher handy and the kiddies at a safe distance.
*If you have long hair, tie it up before you start.
* Light the torch away from yourself and the cake. Then adjust the flame – it should be short and burn blue.
Making marshmallow meringue frosting is really not difficult. It just takes a bit of time. The best part is “pulling” the frosting into curly waves all over the cake, which is great fun for the kids. Then roasting it with a torch makes a beautiful finish and fills the air with a sweet, toasty vanilla scent. The cake looks so elegant, like a sophisticated socialite dressed in a shimmering goddess gown.
Someone asked me if my recipe is for Italian Meringue. Honestly, I have no idea if it is French, Swiss or Italian. What I can tell you is that it looks, smells and tastes beautiful. The recipe has a short list of ingredients. Be sure your mixing bowl is very clean and dry – it should have no oily residue. The meringue is essentially cooked when the hot syrup is mxed into the fluffy egg whites.
5-Minute Meringue Frosting
Makes ~2 cups, enough for a 4-layer cake
5-Min Meringue Frosting
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/4 cup water
3 free-range egg whites, @ room temp
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp vanilla
5 drops food coloring (optional)
Reserve the yolks for another recipe. (The hen worked very hard to make it.)
Add cream of tartar and salt.
Pull: Using the flat side of a spatula or knife, touch the frosting and lift 90 degrees away from the cake, to form little curly peaks.
Torch: Roast the waves of frosting with your new torch and serve.