4 egg whites, room temperature (preferably free range)
1 cup castor sugar
a pinch of fine sea salt
200g dark couverture chocolate (preferably 70% cocoa)
Clean mixing bowl
Medium sized baking tray with grease proof paper to fit
Pot to boil water
Steel bowl to melt chocolate
1. Place clean mixing bowl in refrigerator. Place pot on stove one third filled with water at soft simmering point, place steel bowl on top of pot this will melt the chocolate slowly, be careful not to bring the water to the boil or allow the water to touch the bowl as this will burn the chocolate. Ensure the water is below 41 degrees Celsius.
2. Remove your mixing bowl and wipe away any moisture with paper towel.
3. Separate 4 egg whites into clean mixing bowl and a pinch of salt. Whisk on medium speed until egg whites froth. Slowly add castor sugar. Increase to maximum speed for approx. 6 – 8 Min or until stiff peaks are formed.
NB. To check for stiff peaks, stop the whisk, use your index finger to lightly touch the meringue mix if it points vertically up it is ready to go, if it curls slightly continue to whisk another 2 minutes on full speed.
4. By this stage your chocolate should be smooth and silky, add a pinch of salt, remove from stove, using your oven glove. Using your spatula, pour chocolate into bowl with meringue mixture, slowly fold in chocolate. Do not stir more than 3 to 4 times as this will ensure you achieve a marble effect as oppose to chocolate meringue.
5. Using your spatula spoon blobs of meringue onto your prepared baking paper. Leave approx. 1 to 2cm between each meringue. Sprinkle with chopped hazelnut.
6. Place baking tray into oven of 180 degrees Celsius. Once you have closed the door immediately Turn the temperature down to 110- 120 degrees Celsius, do this slowly.
7. Bake for approximately 1 to 1.5 hours depending on strength of oven. Switch oven off, leave door closed and allow meringue to dry out in the oven over night.