Apple and Hazelnut Vacherin
A Vacherin is a cake made of layers of crisp meringue sandwiched together with layers of fruit and cream.
1cm (½in) plain nozzle
- 3 large egg whites
- 175 g (6oz) golden caster sugar
- 1 tsp cornflour
- 75 g (3oz) toasted hazelnuts ground/very finely chopped
- 4 dessert apples
- 25 g (1oz) butter
- 2 tbsp water
- 1 tsp mixed spice
- 75 g (3oz) sultanas (golden raisins)
- 1 dessert apple
- 15 g (½oz) butter
- 1 tbsp light muscovado sugar
- 450 ml (¾pt) double cream (heavy cream)
- chopped toasted hazelnuts to decorate
To make the meringues
Draw 3 rectangles 10 x 25 cm (4 x10in) on sheets of baking parchment turn the sheets over and place on 2 baking sheets.
Preheat the oven to 140℃ (120℃ fan)/275°F/gas mark 1.
Whisk 3 egg whites until standing in soft peaks, then gradually whisk in 175g (6oz) sugar. Continue whisking until the mixture is stiff and glossy.
Sift in 1tsp cornflour and sprinkle over 75g (3oz)ground toasted hazelnuts and gently fold in with a metal spoon or spatula.
Spoon the mixture into a piping bag fitted with a 1cm (½in) plain nozzle and pipe lines across the rectangles.
Bake for 1 ½ hrs changing the position of the baking sheets halfway through. Without opening the door turn off the oven and leave the meringues to cool
Core and slice 1 apple. Melt 15g (½obutter in a small frying pan and add 1tbsp light muscovado sugar. Add the apple slices to the pan, and cook until just softened and the sugar begins to caramelise. Set aside to cool.
Place one of the meringue layers on a serving plate and spread half the apple mixture over the top.
Whip 450ml (¾pt) cream until standing in soft peaks and spread about one-third on top of the apple.
Place a second meringue on top and spread with the remaining apple mixture and another third the whipped cream.
Place the final layer of meringue on top and decorate with the remaining cream, apple slices and a sprinkling of chopped hazelnuts.