Lemon-Lime Meringue Nests

End a lovely Easter dinner with these stunningly sweet and tangy tarts.

Baking tip: Do not prepare meringues on a wet, humid day. The moisture will make them soggy.

Ingredients

Meringue

  • 3 large egg whites
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar

Filling and Garnish

  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
  • 1 tablespoon grated lime peel
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) chilled butter, cut into small pieces
  • Colored jelly beans
  • Candied lemon strips

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 275 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with wax paper. Using a 3-inch round cookie cutter, trace 6 circles, 2 inches apart, on prepared baking sheet.
  2. Meringue: Beat together egg whites and cream of tartar at high speed until foamy. Beat in sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, until stiff, but not dry, peaks form.
  3. Spoon meringue mixture into a large pastry bag fitted with a star tip. Pipe around 1 circle tracing, then fill in completely. Pipe 2 layers of meringue around outside edges of circle, forming a wall for filling. Repeat with remaining tracings and meringue.
  4. Bake meringues until firm and dry, 45 minutes.
  5. Turn off oven; let meringues stand in oven with the door closed to dry for 2 hours or overnight.
  6. Filling and Garnish: In the top of a double boiler set over simmering (not boiling) water, beat eggs and sugar until light and fluffy. Stir in lemon juice, lime juice, lemon peel and lime peel.
  7. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens slightly, 15 to 20 minutes.
  8. Remove from heat. Stir in butter. Pour filling into a bowl. Press plastic wrap onto surface; chill for 2 to 3 hours.
  9. Spoon filling evenly into meringue shells. Garnish center with jelly beans and candied lemon strips.

Yield: 6 servings

Source: Great American Home Baking

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