Everyone wrangles with desserts to bring to a holiday party. Do you bring something homemade? Pick up store-bought? Who has the time to make something?
It’s really not as hard as you think, even with busy schedules. I’ve been super busy this year. I was so looking forward to my bff Georgina’s Empower Circle. I had volunteered to bring a dessert. We were having a buffet style appetizer bar. Since G’s favorite dessert is my meringues, I decided to combine the seasonal peppermint bark flavor with bite-sized meringue kisses.
If making the meringue kisses by yourself, I definitely recommend prepping everything that you can.
- Measure out all your ingredients
- Line your cookie sheets
- Prepare your piping bag
I don’t have a Kitchen-Aid mixer, so I really appreciated having my friend Cindy there helping me. Like many of the recipes makers I reviewed, life would be easier if my egg whites could be running by themselves as I prepared the sugar. Alas, I beat the egg whites while Cindy brought the sugar mixture to 240 degrees and then slowly poured it into my egg whites.
After adding in the sugar mixture to the beaten egg whites, you’ll want to continue beating until stiff peaks form.
Here is where that extra set of hand came in helpful….filling the piping bag while she held it was so much easier! Either way, fill your piping bag half-full. Then twist the unfilled upper half until you have all the air out of the bag and can pipe out your cute little kisses. I piped 1” diameter circles.
As you see, while meringues are a favorite, I am definitely not a professional at piping. Do you really think anyone cared that my little treats weren’t perfect little meringue kisses? Nope! Once you’ve piped out all of your meringue kisses, bake until dry to the touch, about 2 hours.
NOTE: You can use a spoon to prop open your oven slightly. All the recipes I read said that this helped to release moisture from your oven to prevent cracking. My gas oven didn’t like this recommended method. It would beep at me if I kept it open too long, so while this may work for some of you it may not be possible. I did do it from time to time and my little kisses didn’t have cracks, so that’s why I mention it here.
After letting our kisses cool for 20 minutes, we then melted chocolate per the package directions and crushed candies for dipping the ends of our kisses. Once dipped, they were set to cool on waxed paper.
Here’s what I love about recipes like this… these meringue kisses are definitely something you can make a few days ahead. We, however, used the baking time to shower, blow dry our hair and have something to eat. Then when we had our kisses baked and cooling, we did our make-up. After dipping our kisses, we finished our hair and got dressed.
We were then ready to pack up our little kisses and head to our event. And what fun it was!
Our peppermint bark meringue kisses were a hit! Light, tasty, packed with flavor and easy to share, these were a wonderful addition to our buffet!
Peppermint Bark Meringue Kisses
- candy thermometer
- stand or hand mixer
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup water
- 3 large egg whites
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 pkg Chocolate Melting Wafers
- ½ pkg crushed candy canes about 6 candy canes
- Read all directions through before starting.
- Preheat oven to 200°F. Line a two large baking sheets with parchment paper or a silcone baking liner.
- In a large mixing bowl, add egg whites and vanilla extract. Allowing egg whites to reach room temperature while you continue to step 3. If you have a stand mixer have it ready with a whip attachment or ready your hand mixer.
- In a small pot, add sugar and water. Stir until all sugar is saturated. Cook over medium-high heat, until sugar mixture begins to simmer. Continue to cook sugar until it reaches 240°F while this is cooking do step 4.
- Begin whipping the egg whites on high speed until stiff peaks form.
- On medium-low speed, slowly add the hot sugar syrup to the egg whites trying to add it near the side of the bowl, away from the mixers to avoid sugar spraying or overcooking your egg whites. Once all the sugar syrup is added, increase the speed to high and white the whites until cool, stiff peaks. About 5 minutes.
- Transfer 1/3 of your meringue into a piping bag with a large round tip. On covered baking sheet, pipe 1-inch wide meringues in rows, leaving ¼" space between.
- Bake for 2 hours until dry to the touch. Remove from oven and let cool.
- While meringues cool, melt chocolate according to package instructions and place crushed candy canes in a separate bowl. Layout wax/parchment paper for dipped kisses.
- Dip meringue kisses first into the dark chocolate, shake off extra chocolate and then dip into the crushed candy canes. Place dipped kisses on your wax/parchment paper to dry.
- Store meringues in an air tight container at room temperature for up to three days or share with others! Enjoy!