While I love all types of meringue I have a particular weakness for the French ones- the crunchy, crispy, light as air, melt in your mouth morsels that are part cotton candy, part marshmallow and part crispy cookie in one delectable bite. Yes, French meringues are great on their own as a sweet snack or dessert but I find that their versatility is completely overlooked and I am on a mission to share all the various ways in which great French meringues can elevate and enhance recipes.
Note that for this recipe, or any of the of the others that I will share that require French meringues, you cannot use the meringue cookies that you find packaged in industrial plastic tubs in most grocery stores across America. While I admittedly have a problem with plastic tubs it is actually the quality of the meringues with which I have the biggest beef. For recipes in which the texture and flavor of the meringue is important you must either use homemade meringues or meringues made in a small batch bakery like mine. Hint, hint, you can purchase them in the online meringue shop here- Yay!
Here is my son, Tahm's, favorite cream cheese frosting recipe (by Smitten Kitchen) to which I like to add Délice Glacé meringues in order to increase its creaminess and lend it a depth of flavor that complements the cake that I am baking.
In this instance, as Zar and I were baking a carrot cake for my Mom's Zoom birthday celebration so I decided to use Délice Glacé's Caramel Pink Salt meringues to give the frosting deep caramel notes that would work well with the cake. Its so exciting to use flavored meringues in this way because you can play around with different flavors to give your basic frosting recipe (or dare I say it- even store bought frosting) that oomph. Let me know what flavor combos you decide to try.
2 x 8 oz cream cheese packages softened (Philadelphia brand recommended)
2 sticks unsalted butter softened
2 Cups confectioner's sugar
2 tsp Vanilla extract
One pack of Délice Glacé's Caramel Pink Salt Meringues
Beat together the cream cheese and butter with an electric mixer until smooth, light and fluffy. Beat in sugar, a little at a time to avoid a sugar snow storm. Add the vanilla and mix with the electric mixer until smooth and fluffy. Add in a handful of the meringues at a time. The blades of the mixer will satisfyingly break up the meringues. Add meringues to taste (you need not add the whole pack- leave some to snack on). If you use the frosting immediately, you will get nice crunchy bits of meringue. As the frosting sits, the meringues will dissolve and lend a creaminess to it.