Rainbow Mini Meringues, AKA Unicorn Tears

I don’t even know what to say about these.  They are tiny.  They are rainbow.  They are like delicious little unicorn tears.  They are magic stuck all around a cake, they’re amazing in a trail mix and I can say with some authority that they are also delicious by the handful.  Think this is just a Pinterest fail waiting to happen?  You are so wrong.  You need egg whites, superfine sugar and some gel food coloring.  That’s it.

First step?  Go open a window.  Is it hot?  Is it “muggy”?  Do not attempt to make these on humid days, the result will make you sad.  But if it’s a low humidity day, turn on your oven and follow this amazing recipe from the Meringue Girls.  Make sure to increase your mixer speed slowly and use the whip attachment, not the paddle.  This recipe is my favorite because it’s kind of a hybrid between a french and swiss meringue.  You get a nice, silky texture by pre-baking the sugar, bypassing the troublesome chalky texture of the french meringue.  But you also get the height and stability that I never seem to get from a swiss meringue.  It’s pretty foolproof.

The most fun part of making these is striping the piping bag.  You can watch this quick video or you can wing it.  I took a toothpick, dipped it into the gel food coloring then dragged it across the inside of my piping bag (I used a small star tip with a small piping bag but you can also just use a ziplock with the tip cut off).  Then fill the bag carefully with some meringue and you’re ready to go.  Pipe onto a sheet of parchment or brown paper from a shopping bag in the smallest dollops you can manage.  Don’t worry if you find yourself making a small squealing sound, that’s delight you’re feeling.  Because they really are that cute.  Do follow the recipe’s advice about lifting one to make sure it holds together before taking them out of the oven.  I’ve tried letting them cool in and out of the oven and when they are this small I don’t think it much matters.

The stripes fade a bit as you go, but once you mix them up at the end they all look about the same.  I was able to get several hundred onto each cookie sheet.  One batch yielded about a THOUSAND of these and by the end I lost a bit of steam and started making bigger, quarter-sized dollops.  They didn’t get quite as crisp on the inside but instead had a chewy, hollow center that was also pretty tasty.

These would be great in little treat bags in an easter basket.  We had so many of these we just put them on everything.  I put some in my cereal one morning.  Eventually even the kids lost interest in eating them so I kept finding them abandoned all over the house.  They’re like the glitter of foods.  You should stop whatever you’re doing, put the kids in front of the TV and go make these.

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