Berry meringue sandwiches
A fun dessert for a crowd. Delicious, homemade vanilla ice cream rippled with your favourite jam and fruit curd, speckled with mini meringue kisses, and sandwiched between buttery shortbread rounds or your favourite biscuits. Make the day before and leave in the freezer for up to 6 hours before serving. If you don’t have an ice cream machine no problem! Place the cooked custard into a freezer-proof container and cover with a lid. Freeze for 4 hours, then stir every hour until frozen.
Start by making the ice cream. Place the milk, cream, and vanilla paste into a medium saucepan. Warm on a low heat until the milk is steaming, then remove from the heat to cool a little.
In a large mixing bowl, add the egg yolks and caster sugar, whisking well until lighter in colour. Gradually stir the milk into the egg mixture, pouring it slowly into the pan on a low heat. Using a wooden spoon or silicone spatula, gently stir the mixture until it holds a line on the back of a spoon. This will take about 8 minutes.
Pour the custard through a fine sieve into a large bowl. Cool the custard by placing the bowl into a larger bowl with a little iced water. Whisk until cool and cover.
Transfer the mixture into an ice cream machine and churn until smooth. Spoon the ice cream into a shallow container (around 21.5 x 26.5cm) cover and freeze.
Now make the meringue kisses…
Line two large baking sheets with parchment. Combine the sugars in a small bowl. Place the egg whites into a large, spotlessly clean mixing bowl. Whisk the whites in a stand mixer or with an electric hand whisk to stiff peaks. Add a third of the sugar and keep whisking until thick and glossy – repeat with the remaining sugar. You’ll know when the meringue is ready when you take a little mixture between two fingers and rub together. If it’s smooth with no sugar particles, it’s ready to pipe.
Pre-heat the oven to 120c/100c (fan). Take a piping bag and turn it inside out. Paint 3 long stripes of pink and red food colouring on the bag and turn it back on itself. Fill the bag with meringue and twist to close. Pipe little meringues vertically onto the lined baking trays, and finish each with a little twist to make a point. You’ll see the meringue kisses have little red and pink stripes on them.
Place the trays of meringue into the oven and bake for one hour or until they sound hollow when tapped on the base. Leave them to cool in the oven with the door closed. Once cooled, place the meringues in a sealed box until required.
The day before serving, take the ice cream from the freezer, and allow to soften a little. Crush half the meringues. Fold the berries into the jam. Working quickly, scatter the meringue over the ice cream and fold into the ice cream with the jammy berries. Ripple in the citrus curd. Smooth the mixture over and place the ice cream back into the freezer for at least for 4 hours or overnight.
Before serving, use a 4cm round cookie cutter to stamp out a round. Pick up the cutter using a palette knife to hold the ice cream round in place. Ease out the round onto a biscuit and top with another, gently squeezing down. Place the finished sandwich on a greaseproof paper lined tray or plate and put in the freezer as you make the remaining sandwiches.
Keep the ice cream sandwiches in the freezer for up to 6 hours until required. Serve with the remaining meringues on a serving board or platter for a refreshing treat.
For the ice cream (makes 500ml)
250ml whole milk
150ml double cream
1 tablespoon vanilla paste
2 large Clarence Court hen egg yolks
70g golden caster sugar
To make the meringue kisses
75g icing sugar
75g caster sugar
Pink and red food colouring gel
3 large Clarence Court hen egg whites
24 round biscuits (around 4-5cm width like shortbread rounds or Viennese whirls)
100g fresh raspberries
3 tablespoons berry jam
3 tablespoons citrus curd