Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Cherry-Chocolate Chewies

My love for meringues has been well documented:

Meringue Ghosts
Raspberry Pavlovas
Strawberry Colada Pavlovas
Peppermint Bark Meringues

But why not add one more variation to the list?

With a higher moisture-content, thanks to the bounty of tart, dried cherries running throughout, these two-bite treats have a purely chewy, marshmallow-y texture, without the exterior crunch of my usual meringues.

Even better the day after baking, these little chewies will last up to a week, stored in an airtight container at room temperature.

Cherry-Chocolate Chewies
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup dried tart cherries
2 large egg whites
1/8 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup finely chopped dark chocolate (I used Chocolove Strong Dark 70%)

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.

Place the sugar and the dried cherries in the bowl of a food processor and pulse for 20-second intervals until the sugar is evenly freckled with flecks of cherries.

Set aside.

Place the egg whites and cream of tartar in the bowl of an electric stand mixer and beat until the egg whites are thick, foamy, and just able to hold a very soft peak.

With the mixer on low, add the sugar mixture one tablespoon at a time. Slowly add the vanilla and the chopped chocolate.

Transfer the mixture to a piping bag, and pipe out small "kisses" onto the prepared baking sheets. The kisses can be fairly close together, as the mixture should not spread much while baking.

Bake one sheet at a time at 300 degrees F. for 20 minutes, giving the sheet a 180-degree rotation halfway through. Allow cookies to cool for at least 5 minutes before using a spatula to transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.

Store in a zip-top bag or other airtight container at room temperature for up to one week.

Makes about 30 little chewies.

Thanks for reading! Here's to Being the Secret Ingredient in your life.

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