Try this delicious winter twist on a traditional summer recipe, a cool-weather Eton mess that uses brown sugar and Fairtrade ingredients.
Anna says: ‘I love these meringues – I use brown sugar, which is pretty unusual for a meringue, but it really works. Granted, they won’t be quite as peaky as the ones made with white sugar, but the trade-off is that you get more good chewiness and a deeper caramel flavour.
‘In the summer I serve these with raspberries and some Greek yoghurt sweetened with honey, sometimes with a little basil or mint stirred through. Sometimes, I fold in a little melted chocolate (50g) or a tablespoon of cocoa through the meringues to make them chocolatey.’
‘Fair trade to me is the idea that your food has come from a place where people are treated fairly and with respect. The love and energy that they put into their produce shines through to your plate.’
- 4 organic or free-range egg whites
- 200g Fairtrade soft light brown sugar
- 3 tbsp Fairtrade runny honey
- Zest of 1 unwaxed lime
- 250ml Greek yoghurt or coconut yoghurt
FOR THE STICKY APPLES AND PEARS
- 100g unrefined Fairtrade soft light brown sugar
- 100ml Fairtrade red wine
- 3 apples, such as Spartan or Cox’s, peeled, cored and cut into 8 pieces
- 3 William pears, peeled, cored and cut into 8 pieces
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 Fairtrade cinnamon stick
- 1 star anise
- Zest of 1 unwaxed lime, peeled into strips with a vegetable peeler
- Preheat the oven to 150°C (fan 130°C) / gas mark 2 and line a baking tray with baking paper.
- Put the egg whites into a squeaky clean bowl and whisk with an electric hand whisk or in an electric stand mixer on medium speed until stiff peaks form. Gradually add the sugar, while mixing on high speed until the mixture is thick and glossy. It’s ready when you can pinch the mixture and not feel any granules of sugar. Fold in 2 tablespoons of the runny honey, leaving some ripples through the mixture.
- Spoon into 8 mounds on the baking tray and bake for 1½ to 2 hours (depending on how chewy you like your meringues – less time means chewier middles). The meringues are ready when they are set and light to pick up. Put to one side to cool.
- For the fruit, put the sugar into a pan with the wine and place on a medium heat. Once it’s bubbling, add the fruit, bay leaf, spices and lime zest. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes, or until soft. Set aside to cool completely.
- Fold the lime zest and remaining honey into the yoghurt. Serve the meringues piled with yoghurt, fruit and the syrup from the fruit.
Anna Jones is a cook, writer, the voice of modern vegetarian cooking and the author of the bestselling A Modern Way to Eat, A Modern Way to Cook, The Modern Cook’s Year, and most recently, One.
Photo credit: Brian W. Ferry
This recipe has been shared as part of our Fairtrade Fortnight 2022 Choose The World You Want festival.