A beautiful and impressive festive meringue dessert with a soft and smooth cheesecake centre.
YOU WILL NEED
- 1 x 250 g Ina Paarman’s Lemon Flavour Cheesecake Mix
- ¾ cup (180 ml) cold tap water
- 1 x 250 g tub of fat reduced cream cheese
- 1 cup (250 ml) fresh cream, well chilled
- 2 x 125 g Ina Paarman’s Meringue Mix
- 6 extra large eggs
- ± 3 drops pink food colouring
- ½ cup (125 ml) fresh cream
- berries, edible flowers and icing sugar for dusting
Measure cold tap water into a medium mixing bowl.
Sprinkle contents of pack over the water, add cream cheese and beat slowly until well blended.
In a smaller mixing bowl whip the cream until firm. Add to the cheesecake mix and fold in by hand or beat in on slow speed only, until blended. Spray the inside of a 1 litre yoghurt container with a non-stick spray.
Decant the cheesecake mixture into a 1 litre empty yoghurt container and refrigerate overnight.
Meringue Base and Individuals
Adjust oven rack to middle position. Preheat oven to 140°C.
Line two baking sheets with non-stick baking paper and draw a 22 cm circle on one of the baking paper linings.
Separate 6 eggs. The whites go into a spotlessly clean, large glass (not plastic) mixing bowl. Reserve the yolks to make an egg custard, mayonnaise or to add to scrambled eggs or mashed potatoes.
Beat the egg whites with the electric beater on high speed. Beat until the whites stand up in soft peaks. Do not add sugar mixtures until this soft peak stage. Now gradually add the sugar mixtures little by little while beating on high speed. You will end up with a snow white, thick and shiny meringue. Add the pink colour gel and fold in with a spatula until lightly streaked through the meringue.
Spoon and spread half of the meringue onto baking paper, filling the 22 cm circle.
Shape ⅔ of the remaining meringue with two tablespoons to make big free form meringues. Place on second baking sheet. Shape the other ⅓ with two dessert spoons to make slightly smaller meringues. Bake base and individuals together in the oven.
Bake at 140°C for 20 minutes, reduce temperature to 120°C and dry the meringues out for a further 1 hour, remove the smaller meringues after 40 minutes. Switch off the oven and leave the meringues and base to cool down in the oven.
Place the flat base on a cake stand. Punch a hole in the bottom of the yoghurt container to release the air lock, loosen the sides with a knife. Turn the cheesecake out in the middle of the meringue base. Whip the cream and use it as ‘glue’ to attach the meringues, fruit and flowers to the cheesecake.
Rough up the outside of the cheesecake and build a tower starting with big meringues and ending with smaller ones. Decorate with fruit and flowers and dust with icing sugar. Can be assembled 6 – 8 hours before serving.