Meringue Nests with Lemon Cream and Mixed Berries
Recipe type: Dessert
Total time: 
Serves: 8
A light, fresh dessert perfect for spring and summer! Gluten free, with lactose free substitutions noted. If you aren't serving all 8 at once, just keep the extra components separate and store in the fridge or the nests will get a bit soft. Prepare the nests and lemon curd in advance for an easy dessert when you're ready to eat, or use a good store-bought lemon curd to make it even easier :)
  • 3 large egg whites
  • Pinch cream of tartar
  • ¾ cup white sugar
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 1 Tbsp finely grated lemon zest
  • ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice
  • ⅓ cup cold butter, cubed (can substitute vegan margarine/butter)
  • 1½ cups heavy whipping cream
  • 2 Tbsp confectioner's sugar (icing sugar)
  2. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.  Draw 8 3-inch circles on parchment paper, spacing circles about an 1-2 inches apart to allow for expansion of meringue.  Flip paper over so lines are underneath, but can be seen through as a guide.
  3. Preheat oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit.
  4. Beat egg whites on high speed until foamy.  Beat in cream of tartar until soft peaks form.  Then beat in sugar, 2 Tbsp at a time, until it holds stiff, glossy peaks when you raise your beaters.
  5. Using piping bag fitted with star tip, pipe meringue into the prepared circles.  Along edge of each circle, pipe second circle to make a raised edge for nest.  (Alternatively, spoon meringue into rounds and form each round into nest with the back of the spoon.)
  6. Bake nests for 2 hours.  Turn off oven and let stand in oven for 1 hour - do not open oven door! Remove from oven and transfer to a rack to cool.  These can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 days, or frozen pretty much indefinitely.
  8. In heatproof bowl, whisk together egg yolks, sugar, lemon zest and lemon juice.  Set bowl over saucepan of shallow simmering water.  Do not have hot water reach the bottom of the bowl.  Cook, whisking frequently, until thick enough to coat back of spoon, 8-10 minutes.
  9. Remove from heat.  Stir in butter, 1 piece at a time, until smooth.  Strain curd through a fine sieve into a small glass dish.  Cover with plastic wrap, laying wrap directly on surface of curd to prevent a skin from forming on the surface.  Refrigerate until cooled and thick, about 2 hours.  This can be made ahead and refrigerated for up to 4 days.
  11. On the day you are eating the dessert, whip heavy cream with 2 Tbsp of icing sugar until stiff peaks form.  Fold together with cooled lemon curd until evenly mixed.
  12. TO ASSEMBLE: Fill nests with generous amount of lemon cream.  Top with your favourite mixture of fresh berries. Serve immediately. Enjoy :)
Recipe by Hidden Ponies at