As promised I will explain the meringue with lemon curd desserts. I love Ashuplados as posted by my dear friend Marcia on her blog Bendichos Manos or the Blessed Hands. It is a blog about Rhodosli traditions as followed by her family and Rhodosli happenings here in Los Angeles. Marcia and I have known each other since high school and our fathers new each other when they were kids. Marcia posting Ashuplados was the first element.
The second element; another dear friend Debby Segura, sent me a link to a story published in the Wall Street Journal on April 2, 2011 about Meringue desserts. For years, every Passover I plan one day of baking fun, just to fuss making vacherin cases, large and individual size. Vacherin are big or small decorated bowls of meringue; containers that can hold, mousse, curd, sorbet, ice cream you name it.
The third element: I was on the phone with an internet friend; I call her that because we have never met in person, and she gave me a little recipe for lemon curd over the phone. Sheilah Kaufman is an accomplished cook, author and lecturer about food.
Well, once all these ideas were in my head, they resulted in a large bowl, like a pie crust but thicker or vacherin case filled with my version of Sheilah’s lemon curd , then one filled with strawberry rhubarb filling. Finally I took Marunchino cookie dough , made a prebaked crust out of it in individual glass ramekins, then filled the ramekins with lemon curd and topped them with pre baked Ashuplados.
It was so fun, so easy, so yummy, and my guests were blown away!
This is my altered version of the meringue shells, I have paraphrased their directions.
For the Meringue you will need
6 egg whites
1 and ¾ cup sugar
Pinch of salt
In a stand mixer beat the egg whites and salt with the whisk attachment on medium low until frothy. Turn up the speed until medium-high and beat the whites until soft peaks are forming, and then slowly add the sugar a couple of tablespoons at a time while continuing to beat. Next increase the speed to high and beat the meringue until stiff and glossy.
Turn down the oven temperature to 200° and place the meringue in the lower third of the oven. Bake for 5 hours. Turn off the heat and leave the meringue overnight to finish drying out. You can do this several days ahead but make sure to store the meringue shell in an absolutely dry and airtight place until you are ready to fill it.
There will be more meringue than you need to make the shell. On another parchment lined cookie sheet make Ashuplados by mounded spoonfuls. For Ashuplados, Marcia’s recipe directions say to preheat the oven to 400°. When you place the Ashuplados in the oven turn it down to 220°. Bake for 1 hour, turn the oven off, and then leave them in the oven overnight.
For the lemon curd:
6 extra large eggs
3 egg yolks
2 cups sugar
1 stick plus 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter or margarine
3 lemons juiced
4 tablespoons lemon zest
In a medium mixing bowl beat the eggs and egg yolks together. Gradually whisk in the sugar until thick and lemony looking. Melt the margarine. Add the lemon juice to the eggs and sugar, whisk to combine and then add the melted margarine. Lastly add the lemon zest.
Place the egg, sugar, lemon batter into a medium saucepan. Set the pan on medium low heat and whisk in pattern 8 continuously for around 15-20 minutes. The lemon curd will slowly begin to thicken. You must watch and stir the whole time. When the curd is thick, take it off the heat before it comes to a boil. If it boils, it is ruined and will separate. Scrape all the lemon curd out into a bowl. Place a piece of plastic wrap on the top touching the surface so it will not form a skin. Refrigerate until you are ready to fill the shell.
For the individual Marunchino crust ramekins, make a batch of Marunchino dough. Flatten some into individual glass ramekins. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Remove from the oven and store until you want them for dessert. To plate them, place a generous scoop of lemon curd on top of each crust, top with an Ashuplado and raspberry for garnish.