Okay, I’ll fess up. I named it apple meringue surprise because it didn’t have a name. I thought about Apples Maureen but I figured that was a bit over the top and it IS a surprise that custard is on the bottom.
I love stewed apples. I love vanilla bean custard. I also love meringue on anything. Last week I saw a recipe from Fab Food 4 All in England who’d had some egg whites to use up and made meringue and used it to cover some stewed apples. I thought it looked pretty good but for me, it needed something.
That something was custard.
I peeled the apples (making sure to whiz the peel and core for the worms) and sliced them thickly and stewed them with a bit of lemon juice and water for 20 minutes. Then I added the sugar and cooked til soft. I used the apples in the fridge but a nice apple that doesn’t fall apart would be good for this.
While the apples were gently cooking, I made the custard. I cheated and used the Thermomix. 90C for 7 minutes on speed 4. While that was cooking I made the meringue from the egg whites left over from the ice cream mix I’d made earlier.
I took small ramekins and filled the bottom with custard, spooned over the cooled apples and topped with meringue. In the oven they went for 15 minutes and voilà! (or wa la as I saw on a blog earlier)
You’ll notice from the photos, there are differing amounts of meringue on each dessert. John doesn’t like much meringue at all. Rob is pretty average and I’m the one with it piled on. I figure if you’re going to have meringue, have enough that you don’t want any more for a while.
- 4 large apples, peeled and thickly sliced (5 medium)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 4 tablespoons sugar (or to taste)
- 1 tablespoon water
- 100 grams sugar
- 30 grams corn flour (cornstarch) (use gluten free if you need to)
- 500 grams full cream milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or scrape 1 vanilla bean
- 2 eggs
- 3 egg whites - room temperature
- 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
- pinch of salt
- ¾ cup of caster (superfine) sugar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- Place apple slices in a saucepan with the lemon juice and water on low heat.
- Stir occasionally until the apple slices are nearly soft.
- Add sugar and finish cooking.
- Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
- Add sugar and corn flour and whiz for a few seconds on speed 9.
- Add all other ingredients and cook at 90C for 7 minutes on speed 4.
- Pour into dishes or ramekins and set aside to cool. (they'll get a little skin that will hold up the apples.
- Place egg whites and pinch of salt in a mixing bowl and beat on low speed until frothy.
- Add cream of tartar and beat on medium speed until the egg whites turn opaque. It won't take long. You don't want to get to soft peak stage.
- While continuing to beat, add the caster sugar one teaspoon at a time.
- When half of the sugar has been incorporated, increase the mixer speed to high and slowly add the remaining sugar.
- Add vanilla extract and keep beating until the sugar has dissolved.
- When finished you should be able to pick up the beaters and turn them upside down and the meringue stands up.
- Preheat oven to 190C/375F
- Spoon the stewed apples over the vanilla custard
- Add the meringue over the apples and seal to the side of the dish. You can swirl or make peaks - whatever you like.
- Place on a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown.
- Chill before serving.
I think next time I’d use glass dishes so all the layers would show. I didn’t have enough matching custard cups so I used these.