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Author Notes: Meringue is great atop cakes as well as the more traditional lemon meringue pie.
A friend from Cuba told me that as a kid all his birthday cakes were iced with meringue, and friends from Mexico have said the same. I make Italian meringue for this. And for extra deliciousness, sometimes I caramelize the meringue peaks a bit with a torch or run the cake VERY briefly under a broiler. Meringue icing is particularly good on Devil’s Food Cake. —Gail Monaghan
Makes enough frosting to fill and ice 1 10-inch layer cake
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 large egg whites at room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- Place cream of tartar, salt and egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer with the whisk attachment in place. Beat —starting on low and slowly raising the speed-- until soft peaks form.
- Combine sugar and water in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat until sugar dissolves, stirring mixture frequently, and bring to a boil. Cook, without stirring, for 2 minutes or until a candy thermometer registers 238°.
- Pour hot sugar syrup in a thin stream over egg whites, while beating at high speed until stiff peaks form. Stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and 1/2 teaspoon almond extract if using.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Recipe for Frosting