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Getting Figgy With It

Recipe created by Chef Ellen McKinney, Good Beer Folk and co-host of Food Network's upcoming series, "Fresh and Wild".

Directions:

This dessert looks stunning and tastes magical. I have made similar recipes in the past, but something was missing - my favourite ingredient - Steam Whistle Pilsner! By drenching the figs in beer, they adopt a smooth, subtle malty flavour that makes this dish edible perfection. The beer caramelizes beautifully with the sugar. No more gushing about this dish! On to making it!

Preheat the oven to 250 F. Halve the figs and place them in a bowl. Pour the beer on top of the figs and allow them to soak as you prepare the meringue. Meanwhile, line a baking tray with parchment paper. Beat the egg whites with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in the white and brown sugar a little at a time. Sift the cornstarch over the mixture and gently fold in with the vinegar. Take 1/2 cup of the mixture and with a spatula or spoon, shape into a small round (like mini igloos!) on the baking tray. Repeat with the rest of the mixture. Bake meringues for 30-35 minutes or until light golden. Turn off the oven and allow the meringues to cool in the oven. In the meantime, remove the figs from the beer "marinade". Press the cut side of the figs into the extra sugar. Heat a nonstick frying pan on high heat and add the figs, cut side down. Cook for 2 minutes or until the sugar has melted and is golden. To plate, place a meringue on each dish. Pour a dollop of cream beside the meringue and place two fig halves on top. If fig juices ooze all over the plate - great - this is a rustic, hardy festive dish!

Ingredients

  • 8 figs
  • 1 bottle of Steam Whistle Pilsner
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 Tablespoon white vinegar
  • more sugar (for coating the figs)
  • heavy cream (for a finishing touch)