Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Eton Mess

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With the elegance and special moments of the royal wedding still replaying in my head, I was craving more British goodness and that’s when I remembered about Eton Mess!

Juicy strawberries layered with sweet whipped cream and crispy meringues. Um…YES PLEASE! #getinmymouth

The last time I enjoyed this treat was when I was actually in London. It was definitely not dairy-free, but I scarfed it down anyway. My only regret was that I haven’t had any since.

Plus apparently it’s National Strawberry Week so sign #2 it was meant to be!

Now a brief history on this traditional English dessert. Eton Mess is said to have originated at Eton College—yes, the same boys’ boarding school famous for turning out Britain’s brightest and educating generations of the British Royal Family, including Prince William and Prince Harry—being served at its annual cricket match against Harrow School. Hence the “Eton” part.

The “mess” part of the name refers to the appearance of the dish.

Despite looking messy, I think this is quite an elegant dessert. It takes a good bit of preparation, but I promise it’s worth the effort.

And with the juiciest strawberries on the horizon, it’s the perfect time!

Let me know what you think and if you make it I’d love to see your creation by using #heystudioist on IG.


Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Eton Mess

Serves 4

Ingredients

For the Meringues:

  • 2 large egg whites, room temperature
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar (optional)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract (pure not imitation)

For the Whipped Cream:

  • 1 (14 oz) can coconut cream
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar, additional to taste

For the Strawberries:

  • 1 lb fresh strawberries, hulled and quartered
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

Directions

The night before:

  1. Chill the coconut cream in the fridge overnight.
  2. Prepare the meringues (see directions below).

For the Meringues:

  1. Preheat the oven to 170 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. With an electric stand or handheld mixer on medium speed, whisk the egg whites until foamy.
  3. If applicable, add the cream of tartar and continue whisking until soft peaks form.
  4. Increase the mixer speed to high and add the sugar slowly, beating until stiff peaks form.
  5. Add the vanilla and whisk until just combined.
  6. Pipe the meringue batter onto the prepared baking sheet.
  7. Bake for roughly 2 - 2 1/2 hours or until meringues are crisp, light and can easily be peeled off the parchment sheet.
  8. Turn off the oven and allow the meringues to cool completely overnight.

For the Strawberries:

  1. In a bowl, toss the strawberries, sugar and lemon juice together. Allow to rest on the counter for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Place 2/3rds of the mixture into a food processor, pulsing until a smooth sauce forms.
  3. Use the remaining strawberries for topping.

For the Whipped Cream:

  1. Ten minutes before making the coconut cream, place a large mixing bowl to chill in the fridge.
  2. Open the coconut cream can and spoon out the thick cream layer, leaving the liquid behind, into the chilled mixing bowl.
  3. Beat with mixer until creamy.
  4. Add powdered sugar and mix until smooth and well combined. Test taste and adjust sweetness to preference.

To assemble the layers:

  1. Crumble 2/3rds of the meringues and gently fold them into the whipping cream.
  2. Scoop a layer of the cream mixture into each serving glass.
  3. Spoon the pureed strawberries on top.
  4. Continue layering the cream and strawberries until ingredients are all used up.
  5. Top with sliced strawberries and remaining whole meringues.
  6. Serve immediately.