A Swiss meringue starts with the same proportion of whites to sugar as French meringue, but the preparation is a bit different and results in a firmer meringue that is useful for crisping to make layers, or piping on Baked Alaskas. Swiss meringue also makes an excellent filling for my Little Debbie Oatmeal Cream Pies. So good!
Even though you are heating the whites, they never get hot enough to eliminate the minuscule threat of salmonella, so be wary if you’re cooking for the elderly, the very young, or anyone with a compromised immune system. you’ll definitely want to bake this meringue to completely ensure safety.
UPDATE: If you cook the whites, whisking constantly, to 180F, salmonella concerns are effectively put to rest.
- 1 part egg whites
- 2 parts granulated sugar
- a drop or 2 of lemon juice (the acid helps stabilize the foam)
- flavoring (vanilla, liqueur, etc)
- Put all ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer (or just a big old bowl if you feel like doing it Old School).
- Place the bowl over a pan of hot/simmering water on the stove. Stir whites and sugar together until about 100 degrees, F, or warm to the touch. The sugar should be more-or-less dissolved by now. Test it by rubbing a bit between your fingers. If it’s still very gritty, keep stirring over the hot water.
- When the sugar is dissolved, put the bowl onto the stand mixer (or get out the whisk) and whip on high until cool and glossy. Mixture should hold stiff, glossy peaks.