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Spiced meringues with coffee-soaked prunes

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Ingredients

For the meringue

  • 3 egg whites (left over from the fish pies, see ‘Goes well with’, below)
  • 175g caster sugar
  • ½ tsp mixed spice

For the prunes and cream

  • 2 tbsp instant coffee
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 250g pack ready-to-eat pitted prune
  • 285ml and 142ml pot double cream

Method

  • STEP 1

    Heat oven to 150C/fan 130C/gas 2 and line 2 baking sheets with baking parchment. Put the egg whites in a clean bowl and beat with an electric whisk until thickened and frothy. While whisking, add sugar 1 tbsp at a time until the mix is stiff and glossy. Fold in the spice.

  • STEP 2

    Working quickly, pile 8 big spoonfuls of the meringue onto the baking sheets, spacing them evenly apart. Then, with the back of a spoon, lightly flatten them and hollow out the centres to make nest shapes. Bake for 45 mins, then turn off the oven and leave the meringues inside to cool for 4 hrs or overnight. Can be made 2 days ahead and kept in an airtight container.

  • STEP 3

    Put the coffee and sugar in a pan with 200ml water. Add the prunes, bring to a simmer, then stir to dissolve the coffee. Leave to simmer for 10 mins until most of the liquid is absorbed, then take off the heat and cool. Can be made 2 days ahead and chilled.

  • STEP 4

    To serve, whip the cream until it holds its shape. Spoon onto the meringues, then top with the prunes and a little of their juice.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, February 2009

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