Peppermint Meringue Kisses

Red and green Peppermint Meringue Kisses on a marble tabletop

Holiday Kisses
When I was a kid, a family friend would always make us a Christmas cookie assortment. I looked forward to them every year—mainly because there were a lot of spritz cookies in the mix. I love anything with that much butter.

I was always fascinated though by the separate container that accompanied the main box. This container had the meringue cookies. I thought it was weird that these particular cookies got their own container. Now that I have made them myself, I get it. You don’t put the time in to make the meringues only to have them shatter in a box full of sturdier cookies.

Meringues are a delight for the mouth. They are light as air and melt on your tongue. They can come in so many different flavors. My daughter is partial to espresso-flavored meringues. Personally, I like all versions. But, for a holiday box, I like to go with Peppermint Meringue Kisses as a change from all of the chocolate and nut flavors in the box. A palate cleanser of sorts.

The kisses below were included in my cookie boxes this year. Streaking the piping bags with food coloring is a fun way to add color and also signal the flavor.

Something to keep in mind when making these: just like French macarons and bread making, the weather outside matters. If the air has a lot of humidity, the meringues can take a little longer to dry and when the air is too dry, they can crack pretty easily.

Peppermint Meringue Kisses Recipe
Adapted from Holiday Cookies by Elisabet der Nederlanden
Yields about 64 kisses

7 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 cups superfine sugar
1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract, or more to taste
1/2 teaspoon red or green gel food coloring, or more for a more dramatic stripe
Pastry bag with an open star tip
Small paintbrush

Prep the oven and pans
Position two oven racks, evenly spaced, in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 300º F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.

Mix the batter
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk the egg whites on high speed until they are tripled in size and very frothy (about 2 minutes). Add the cream of tartar and whisk briefly until combined.

While the mixer is whisking on high speed, add the sugar in a slow steady stream until it is incorporated, then continue to whisk on high speed until stiff peaks form (about 3 to 4 minutes).

Add the flavoring
Remove the bowl from the mixer stand and gently fold in the peppermint extract distributing it evenly with a rubber spatula careful not to use too much extract. (You don’t want them to taste like toothpaste!)

Form the meringues
Fit the pastry bag with the star tip. Using the paintbrush, brush lines of the food coloring the length of the pastry bag on the inside starting from the tip end toward the top of the bag. Make as few or as many lines as you like. Fill the pastry bag with the meringue.

Pipe kisses about 1-1/2 inches wide maximum onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing them evenly. You should have about 32 on each sheet (or more if you make them smaller).

Bake the cookies
Bake the meringues for 30 minutes, switching the racks halfway through. After 30 minutes turn off the oven and leave the meringues inside for 1 hour longer to dry.

To serve
When done, carefully transfer the meringues to wire racks to cool further before serving.

To store
Store in a dedicated airtight container so they don’t absorb the moisture from other cookies.

Comments are closed.