Hazelnut Meringue Gateau (gluten free)
This classic French creation looks very grand but it's really very straightforward to make.
During my café kitchen days, I once had a customer beg me for this recipe as she felt it was one she couldn't live without - that's how I know you'll also love it.
6 egg whites
2 cups caster sugar
1 cup (120 g) ground hazelnuts
300 ml cream, lightly whipped
Fresh fruit such as strawberries, to decorate
Preheat oven to 150 °C. Grease two 20cm cake tins and lightly dust with caster sugar.
In a clean bowl, whisk egg whites until stiff peaks hold their shape. Add 1 tablespoon of sugar and beat to combine. Whisk in remaining sugar, a little at a time, until the mixture is thick and glossy. Using a large metal spoon, fold in the ground hazelnuts.
Divide the mixture equally between the prepared tins, smoothing the surface of each meringue. Bake for 60 minutes.
Stand cakes in tins for 30 minutes to firm before gently removing to wire racks to cool completely. The meringues can be stored in an airtight container at this stage until ready to fill and serve.
Ideally it is best to fill the layers about 2 hours before serving. Spread half the whipped cream over one circle of meringue, followed by half the Raspberry Sauce. Place the second meringue on top and spread with remaining whipped cream.
Decorate with fresh fruit. Serve remaining Raspberry Sauce on the side.
John Hawkesby's wine recommendation
Riesling: Craggy Range Te Muna Road 2011