Making Italian Meringue (A Frozen Dessert and Frosting)

Italian meringue is most commonly used in frostings and sometimes in desserts.  It is made by beating egg whites to stiff peaks and then pouring hot sugar syrup through the meringue.  Boiled icing is a type of Italian meringue. 

Today we will make a wonderful low-fat frozen dessert using Italian meringue—one that you will enjoy during the warm summer months.  It's really quite quick and simple to make if you have a thermometer to tell when the syrup is hot enough.  From kids to adults, this will become a favorite frozen dessert. 

This is really a simple concept: pour hot sugar syrup through whipped egg whites then fold the egg white mixture into a fruit and yogurt mixture before freezing.  

To make boiled icing, pour the hot syrup through the egg whites whiel whipping, add the flavoring, and continue whipping until peaks form.  Further in this article, is a basic frosting recipe.  Change flavorings to fit the occassion. 

Italian Frozen Yogurt

Ingredients:

1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup plus 1/2 tablespoon water
3 large egg whites
1 cup fresh or individually frozen raspberries or strawberries
1 cup low fat vanilla or plain yogurt

Directions: 

1. To make the Italian meringue:  Dissolve the sugar in the water in a heavy saucepan.  Bring to a boil and continue cooking until the syrup reaches 250 degrees, stirring frequently.
2. In the meantime, beat the egg whites until peaks form.
3. Pour the hot syrup slowly through the egg whites while continuing to beat the whites.  Continue until the mixture has cooled and peaks again form.
4. Puree the berries.  Force the puree through a sieve to remove the seeds if desired.
5. Whip the yogurt until smooth and mix in the berry puree.
6. Fold the cooled meringue into the yogurt and berry mixture one-third at a time. 
7. Pour into molds and freeze.

This makes a wonderful parfait. 

It is important to get the syrup fully heated.  The hot syrup cooks the eggs as it is whipped through it. 


Meringue Icing (Boiled Icing)

Ingredients

1 cup of granulated sugar
1/3 cup water
2 egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla
Dash of salt

Directions: 

1. Dissolve the sugar and salt in the water in a heavy saucepan.  Bring to a boil and continue cooking until the syrup reaches 250 degrees, stirring frequently.
2. In the meantime, beat the egg whites until peaks form.  Pour the hot syrup slowly through the egg whites while continuing to beat the whites.  Continue until the mixture has cooled and peaks again form.  Add the vanilla extract as the mixutre cools.

This makes enough to frost the tops and sides of a two-layer cake.