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First Time Making Meringues -- Screwed Up??

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I'm making (or trying to make) meringues for Thanksgiving tomorrow. My niece is GF and I'm dairy-free, so this seemed like a good dessert for us both. BUT. I think I screwed them up -- I used too big a bowl to beat the egg whites, so although they seemed stiff after I beat them for a long time, when I piped them, they collapsed. They will be done baking in about 45 minutes (8PM). I'm supposed to keep them in the oven overnight (or at least 3 hours). Can I tell if they are going to be good by tasting them at 8, or how long do I need to wait? I am not sure I could do them again tomorrow -- I have other baking to do, so there may not be time. Do they HAVE to cool in the oven? If they are about quarter size (I like them small), how high should they be? Any other advice would be great. Thanks.

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  1. It may not be fully dried, but take one out and try it.

    1. A homely advise for your future meringue endeavour: whip the egg whites with a small dose of powdered sugar and if you have, cream of tartar. It will hold the meringue better. Also don't forget, all utenils have to be dirt free and cool. Hope this helps :)