6 egg whites, at room temperature
1½ cups caster sugar
liquid red food colouring, to tint
½ x 375 g bag white chocolate melts, melted
Mini peppermint candy canes, to decorate
- Grease three large oven trays. Trace 80 x 5cm circles onto three sheets of baking paper, 2cm apart. Place, trace-side down, onto prepared trays.
- Beat egg whites in a large bowl of an electric mixer until soft peaks form. With motor operating, add sugar, 1 tbsp at a time, beating well after each addition until sugar is dissolved. Beat for a further 10 minutes, or until smooth and glossy.
- Dot five separate drops of colouring over meringue. Do not stir or mix. Gently spoon half the mixture into a piping bag fitted with a 1½cm plain nozzle, without mixing in the colouring. Pipe mixture onto circles on prepared trays. Repeat with remaining mixture, adding more drops of colouring.
- Cook in a very slow oven (120C) for about 1 hour, 20 minutes, or until meringues are dry and firm to touch. Turn off oven. Leave to cool in oven with door ajar.
- To assemble, arrange 19 meringues, side by side, over the base of a serving plate in the shape of a circle, using chocolate to join meringues together. Arrange remaining meringues on their side, around the edge of the base, joining with chocolate, to create a tree shape, as pictured.
- Decorate tree with candy canes by using a small amount of chocolate to glue the canes to the meringue.