This Frozen Rhubarb and Cranberry Meringue Recipe is clever and so refreshing. It’s not a meringue , it’s not a sorbet, it’s both. No actually, it’s a cloud! Believe it or not, it’s great as a pre-dessert or as a big bowl of meringuey-deliciousness, if that’s even a word?
– 25 large rhubarb sticks (about 1kg)
– Tiny pinch of salt
– 30g caster sugar
– 4 drops natural red food coloring
– 75g caster sugar
– 1 bronze gelatine leaf, soaked in cold water for 5 minutes
– 100ml cranberry juice
– 18g albúmina powered egg white
– 2 tbsps grand marnier
Poached Rhubarb and Cranberries
– 1 litre cranberry juice
– 200g caster sugar
– 1 vanilla pod, split lenghtways
– 8 X 40cm rhubarb sticks (130g), halved
– 100g frozen cranberries, defrosted
– 25G pistachio nuts, toasted and chopped, per serving
1. For the rhubarb juice, process the rhubarb through a juicer, then skim off the froth and measure 250ml.
2. Mix in the salt and sugar until dissolved, then mix in the food colouring. Set aside.
3. For the frozen meringue, line a tray about 30 x 25cm and 7cm deep with clingfilm and place in the freezer.
4. Heat 75ml water and the sugar gently in a small saucepan, stirring until the sugar has dissolved.
5. Remove from the heat, add the drained, squeezed-out gelatine leaf and leave until melted, stirring occasionally.
6. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk together the rhubarb juice, cranberry juice and albúmina on a low speed, then increase the speed to medium.
7. When the mixture has tripled in volume, reduce the speed and slowly add the gelatine mixture.
8. Whisk on a medium speed until the meringue has tripled in volume again, then add the Grand Marnier and whisk for a further 10 seconds.
9. Remove the lined tray from the freezer and, using a spatula, scrape the meringue gently into the tray.
10. Smooth off the top or leave for a rustic, uneven effect. Place in the freezer for a minimum of 6 hours, preferably overnight.
11. For the poached rhubarb and cranberries, put 750ml of the cranberry juice, the sugar and vanilla pod in a large sauté pan and bring to a simmer over a medium heat.
12. Add the rhubarb to the pan along with the remaining cranberry juice if the rhubarb is not completely covered.
13. Simmer gently for 5–10 minutes, or until a knife penetrates the rhubarb with little resistance.
14. Remove the rhubarb and put on a tray to cool, then cook the poaching liquid until reduced by one-third and stir in the cranberries.
15. Remove the pan from the heat and leave to stand until the cranberries are softened, then chill in the fridge ready to serve.
16. To serve, place one piece of the poached rhubarb at room temperature in a large serving bowl and sprinkle with the pistachios. Spoon the cranberries and some of the chilled poaching liquid around the piece of rhubarb, then add a large scoop of the frozen meringue on top. Serve immediately.
This is the minimum you can make for the quantities to be large enough for the meringue to be whisked and set. The frozen meringue will keep in the freezer for up to seven days.
Glynn Purnell was awarded a Michelin Star whilst Head Chef at Jessica’s, in turn giving Birmingham its first ever Michelin star. He now runs Purnell’s and Purnell’s Bistro. He regularly appears on BBC1’s Saturday Kitchen and has also featured on The Great British Food Revival. Following the success of Glynn’s first book, Cracking Yolks and Pig Tales, his second book is described as ‘rustic home cooking with an eclectic twist’, and is perfect for anyone who wants to get creative in the kitchen.