Traditionally known as Mothering Sunday, this day was a holiday for domestic servants who were allowed home to visit their mothers & the church where they had grown up.
Although in the middle of the fasting period of Lent, they were allowed to bring with them a Simnel Cake – a fruit cake with a layer of marzipan & decorated with 11 balls to represent the apostles, not including Judas. Gradually, the Simnel Cake became less of a Mothering Sunday tradition & associated more with Easter.
Why not start a modern tradition & treat your mum to these lovely meringues. Sandwich together with raspberry cream cheese frosting.
makes 30 individual or 15 sandwiched
4 egg white
8oz (225g) caster sugar
pink food colouring/paste
Cream Cheese Frosting (optional):
2oz (50g) cream cheese
1oz (25g) margarine
6oz (175g) icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
Pre-heat the oven to 150C, gas mark 2.
Line 3 baking sheets with baking parchment.
Place the egg whites in a large clean bowl & whisk until they form soft peaks which hold their shape. Don’t over beat or they will collapse. Gradually whisk in the sugar until it is all incorporated. Whisk in the food colouring until the desired shade is obtained.
Use 2 dessert spoons or pipe the meringue mixture onto the baking parchment into approximately 1.5 inch circles. Dip a cocktail stick or the end of a teaspoon into the food colouring & swirl through each meringue.
Place the baking sheets in the oven, then immediately turn the oven down to 140C, gas mark 1. Cook for 1 hour & then turn the oven off but leave the meringues inside until completely cold.
For the frosting, cream margarine & cream cheese together. Stir in the vanilla essence. Gradually blend in the icing sugar. Add the raspberries & stir in. If necessary, add milk to obtain a creamy texture.
When cold, sandwich meringues of similar size together with the frosting & place in a cupcake case.