Rainy Day Meringues

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On Saturday I leave for Copenhagen. I returned home on the 3rd from an internship in Washington , D.C, only to prepare to leave again in another two weeks. Waking up in the morning brings new emails and information from DIS. I’m in the Justice and Human Rights program, and I found out I’ll be living in the Øresundskollegiet. I’ve begun emailing my visiting family and I’ve received a schedule for orientation week. As the reality of leaving sets in, I keep trying to get in all of my “lasts”.

I’ve been trying to see every friend one last time before Saturday. I binged two seasons of Girls in two days, worried I wouldn’t have the chance to finish it in Denmark. I’ve been annoying my puppy, Peter Nincompoop, as much as possible before I have to miss him for 4 months. But above all else, I have found myself needing to spend as much time in the kitchen as possible.

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I will have a kitchen on my hall, and the high cost of living in Denmark will probably force me to make all my own food. But even so,  I decided to spend a rainy day making meringues.

I followed a basic meringue recipe, and customized it with my own flavors. I added cocoa powder to half the batch to create some yummy chocolate meringues, but with the other half I used one of my favorite ingredients, rose water. The baking instantly felt cathartic, and I became more at ease about leaving so soon.

Despite my stress over last-minute packing and adjusting to a new country, I cannot wait to walk/eat/shop my way through Denmark. Mostly eat.

Recipe for Rose Water and Chocolate Meringues:

3 egg whites (room temperature)
¼ tsp cream of tartar
¾ cup caster sugar (but some say granulated or confectioner’s work just as well, idk)
1.5 tsp rose water
2 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
Red or brown food coloring (optional)

1.     Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.

2.     Beat the eggs in a mixer (or hand whisk if you’re feeling feisty) on high until nice and frothy.

3.     Add cream of tartar and keep at your whisking as though your right arm (or left, I don’t discriminate) isn’t in horrible pain.

4.     When the egg white business is stiff enough to form soft peaks (but not so stiff that it stands on its own), add the sugar, one spoonful at a time. Continue whisking as you add the sugar.

5.     Continue to whisk until the mixture becomes stiff enough that you make peaks that stand on their own. Or, according to some people more adventurous than I, whisk until the mixture is so stiff that you could hold the bowl upside down over your head, and the meringue would not move.

6.     Split the batch in half. Add rose water and a slight amount of red food coloring, and stir.

7.     To the other half, add cocoa powder and brown food coloring.

8.     Line baking pans with aluminum foil. Use a piping bag with 2cm tip to pipe the meringue onto the foil.

9.     Bake for 45 minutes at 200 degrees. Turn off heat and then have the meringues sit in the oven for 2 hours because of things I don’t understand. The timing for this is just based on other recipes I’ve seen. Actually cook time for me was 30 min, with a 1 hour cool down time. Just make sure you keep an eye on the meringues and keep poking them with a toothpick. Take them out when they are dry.

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