First let me say thanks to AGM, Amuse Bouche, Nyleve, Carb Lover and Adam CLyde for all of your tips and comments which really made me excited to make this dessert - egg whites always scare me!
This is my new favorite dessert!!!! It was so delicious - WOW - what a treat and the guest of honor Craig's mother loved it.
I ended up using a recipe from Epicurious and then modified it using a reviewers tips. It was easy thanks to my Kitchenaid. I used only one container of Raspberries - 2 would have been better. I also made it the day before and kept it on the pan wrapped in tinfoil - which worked out really well as on Sunday we needed the oven for our 10 hour pork butt.
Here it is:
6 large egg whites
1 1/2 cups superfine granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup boiling water
2 cups heavy cream
3 cups assorted seasonal fruit such as raspberries and sliced strawberries and kiwifruit [passion fruit is the Australian way but I could not find any ripe ones...]
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking pan with aluminum foil -SHINY side up. I traced a 9" circle in the middle of the pan.
2. With egg whites at ROOM temperature place in bowl with cornstarch, vinegar and vanilla. Beat until soft peaks form.
3. Slowly add sugar and beat to stiff peak stage.
4. Spoon in a tablespoon at a time of the boiled water in to mixer- Beat after each addition until egg whites become glossy and very stiff. I ended up only using 4 or maybe it was 5 tablespoons - I can't say why you do this.
5. Using a spatula spread mixture on to baking pan. The meringue is easy to work with. My base was 2"high and then I added another 1" tall wall around the whole circumference- spreading meringue from the 'floor' to help build the wall.
6. Place in oven for 10 minutes.
7. After 10 minutes [it sould be a patchy beautiful golden brown]decrease temperature to 200 degrees and bake another 40 minutes.
8. After 40 minutes turn oven off and leave in oven for another 2 hours.
9. Whip the cream and spread in to the center of meringue.[ I put a tablespoon or 2 of sugar in the cream while whipping.]
10. Mound desired fruit on top of whipped cream and eat promptly.