What a show stopper this is! My fiancés favourite dessert on the planet is Eton Mess, a traditional English dessert that is essentially whipped cream mixed with broken up meringue and fruit. It was his birthday last month and he is not a fan of traditional cake so I decided to turn his favourite Eton mess in to a cake! Or a roulade if we are being particular.
This dish is a layer of light, chewy meringue rolled up with vanilla cream and lots of fresh berries. It may seem intimidating, meringue is tricky at the best of times, and rolling it up may seem crazy! I promise it is pretty simple as long as you follow some easy tips to get the meringue right, because this recipe is really all about the meringue! See my tips below and just take your time with it.
Perfect Meringue Equipment
The main piece of equipment you need is a hand mixer or a stand mixer, you really can’t get the texture right by beating by hand. Or maybe you can, if you have serious arm muscles – which I do not! I love the simplicity of a hand mixer as you move it around the bowl and it doesn’t take up lots of space. My favourite is the classic Dualit mixer.
Perfect Meringue Tips
- Room temperature eggs: these are essential for getting enough whip!
- Fine, white sugar: golden or brown sugar will discolour the meringue and it must be very fine so that it dissolves easily. Caster sugar is ideal.
- Clean equipment: meringue is very sensitive to residue on your equipment so use a very clean bowl. One from the dishwasher should be perfect.
- Dissolve the sugar: if you don’t dissolve the sugar properly, it will leak out while baking. Beat it until you cannot feel the sugar in the mixture for best results.
- Stiff peaks: when the mixture is finished, you should have stiff, white glossy peaks that don’t move when you tip the bowl.
- Dairy-free: fill with a dairy free whipped cream or coconut cream.
- Fruit: top with any berries or fruit you have to hand.
Eton Mess Roulade
- 4 large egg whites
- 1 cup white caster sugar 200g
- 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 cups mixed berries 500g
- 2 tsp sugar
- 2 cups heavy/double cream 500ml
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 4 mini meringues optional
- Preheat oven to 160c/320f. Line a swiss roll/jelly roll tin with baking paper. A Large baking tray with high sides of at least 1" and around 40x25cm will also work.
- Crack the eggs and separate the yolks and whites, adding the whites to a large mixing bowl. Save the yolks and make homemade mayonnaise!
- Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, whisk the eggs until white and foamy.
- Add the vanilla and cream of tartar. Then start adding the sugar gradually, a few spoonfuls at a time, beating in between until all of the sugar is added and your meringue is forming stiff, glossy peaks.
- Scrape the meringue out in to the prepared tray and gently spread out evenly.
- Bake for 15-18 minutes, until slightly golden and mostly firm.
- Meanwhile, dice most the berries and add to a bowl. Save a few whole for topping. Sprinkle over the sugar, mix and set aside.
- Remove from the oven and turn it out on to another piece of baking paper. Leave to cool for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, add the cream and vanilla to a mixing bowl and whisk until thick. Add in some icing sugar if you would like a sweeter cream.
- Once the 10 minutes is up, spread the cream gently over the meringue. Save around 1/2 cup cream for the top.
- Sprinkle over the berries.
- Using the baking paper to help you, carefully roll up the meringue. Roll fairly tightly, but not too tight or the meringue will snap. Be sure not to roll the paper inside the meringue!
- Roll up in the paper and place in the fridge for 20 minutes, or until you are ready to serve. Place the remaining cream in the fridge too.
- Take the roulade out of the fridge and remove the paper. Place on a serving tray.
- Spread on the remaining cream and top with the berries and mini meringues if desired.
I hope that you enjoyed this recipe! Let me know down below what you thought and what you made it for! If you are now feeling more confident with your meringue skills, you may like to try my Perfect Pavlova.