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Happy Ending

The following celiac-friendly dessert recipe is from Susie Fishbein’s new cookbook, “Passover by Design” (ArtScroll Shaar Press).

Lemon Meringues
pareve, non-gebroktsmakes 6 servings

Meringues:

2 egg whites
pinch of fine sea salt
½ cup sugar, super-fine if possible
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon almond extract

Lemon Cream:

1½ cups sugar
¹⁄³ cup potato starch
2 cups water
¹⁄³ cup plus 3 tablespoons lemon juice, divided
3 egg yolks

Garnishes:

¼ cup nondairy whipping cream
2 ounces semisweet chocolate
1 teaspoon margarine
6 hazelnuts or cashews

Allow the egg whites to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Cover two baking sheets with parchment paper. Preheat oven to the lowest possible temperature, about 175 F. Place the egg whites in the bowl of a mixer. With the whisk attachment, whip the egg whites with the salt about 5 minutes or until soft peaks form; the tips will curl. Gradually add the sugar, beating on high until stiff peaks form; the tips will stand straight, and sugar will be dissolved. Fold in vanilla and almond extracts.

Evenly spread the meringues to form 12 circles on the parchment-paper lined baking sheets. Flatten slightly so that they have a diameter of about 3 to 4 inches. Place the two baking sheets in the oven for 4 hours. When they are done, remove them from the parchment; if the bottoms are sticky in the center, return them to the oven for longer. You want them completely dried out but not browned. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

When completely cool, place in an airtight, covered container. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Lemon Cream: In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar and potato starch. Whisk in the water, stirring constantly, until the mixture comes to a boil over medium-high heat. Boil for one minute. Remove from heat. Stir in 1/3 cup of lemon juice.

In a small bowl, stir the egg yolks with a fork. Add a spoonful of the lemon cream to the eggs. Slowly stir the egg mixture into the lemon cream. Continue to cook for 1 minute. Stir in the remaining 3 tablespoons of lemon juice. Remove from heat. Cool for 15 minutes. Cover the top of the filling with plastic wrap, making sure it touches the cream, or a skin will form. Cool to room temperature or refrigerate overnight or up to 2 days in advance.

Garnishes: In a large bowl, with the mixer at a high speed, whip the whipping cream. Reserve for a whipped cream dollop on top.

Over a double boiler or in a microwave, melt the chocolate with the margarine. Roll each nut in the chocolate and gently remove with a fork to a sheet of wax paper. Let stand until chocolate is set and shiny; can be put in the refrigerator for 5 minutes. Store in an airtight container until ready for use.

To assemble, spread half the meringues with lemon cream. Top with remaining meringues. Place a small dollop of whipped cream on the top of each “sandwich,” and top with a chocolate-dipped hazelnut or cashew. Serve immediately.

Used by permission. “Passover by Design,” Susie Fishbein, ArtScroll Shaar Press, Brooklyn NY, Feb. 2008.

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