6 large egg whites, room temperature
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F / 150 degrees C with racks in upper and lower thirds. Line 2 large rimmed baking sheets with parchment.
2. Place the egg whites and granulated sugar in a mixing bowl set over a pot of simmering water and heat, whisking occasionally, until sugar is dissolved and mixture is hot. This should take about 3 minutes.
3. Transfer bowl to mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, or use a hand-held whisk. Beat on high speed until stiff dry peaks form and bottom of bowl is cool to the touch - this should take around 3 to 5 minutes. Fold in the cornstarch and vinegar. Transfer meringue to a large pastry bag fitted with a large open star tip (such as Ateco #829).
4. Pipe small dots of combined meringue in corners of prepared baking sheets to secure parchment. Holding pastry bag at a 90-degree angle about ½ inch above parchment, pipe base layer of each tree, about 2 inches in diameter, in a swirling fashion. Pipe a smaller layer on top, followed by an even smaller top layer.
5. Transfer baking sheets to oven and reduce heat to 200 degrees F / 95 degrees C. Bake until meringues feel firm but are still pliable and are not taking on any colour - usually about 2 hours baking time. Let cool completely on baking sheets on wire racks. Trees can be stored in a single layer (without touching) in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
3 large egg whites
4 cups powdered sugar
½ teaspoon cream of tartar
ColorKitchen colored powders: green, red and yellow
glycerin or water for mixing colors
1. Using a wooden spoon or rubber spatula, stir egg whites, powdered sugar, and cream of tartar in a medium bowl until a thick paste forms with no dry spots. Ideally, the glaze should sit for at least 12 hours for sugar to fully hydrate, but it can be used as soon as the meringues have cooled.
Or, you can cover and chill up to 1 week. Bring to room temperature before using.
2. Separate the glaze into 3 bowls. One large bowl for the green and 2 tiny bowls for the red and yellow. In separate bowls mix ColorKitchen powders with glycerin or water to form a smooth paste. Starting slowly add a little colour to the glaze. Continue adding colour until you like the colours of the glazes. Cover your bowls of coloured glaze well with plastic to avoid them drying out until you are ready to start decorating.
3. The red and yellow glaze should be fairly stiff for piping the star and the tiny red dots. The green however needs to be very runny for dipping the trees. Before you start adding green ColorKitchen paste, add some additional egg white to the bowl and whisk gently until you like the consistency.
4. Set a sheet of parchment paper on a baking sheet for drying your trees. Holding the bottom of the tree, dip it into your green glaze. Roll it around to cover all sides if your bowl is not very deep. Lift up the tree and let the excess glaze drip back into the bowl. Then gently set your tree on your baking sheet to dry. Repeat with remaining trees.
5. Once your trees are dry to the touch, you can pipe on the star top and the red dots for decorations. Use either a tiny round pastry tip or a piece of parchment rolled into a cone and snipped at the tip.
6. Once your trees are finished, let them dry overnight before storing them in a single layer in an airtight container for up to a week.
- Recipe by chef Rose Archer