Siba's tip...

Do not overbeat as the meringue will deflate and not maintain its peaks nicely. It is best to make the meringues a day before. Allow them to cool completely. Then store then in an air-tight container. Make sure that meringues are completely dry on the outside before removing them from the oven. Cool them completely before placing them in a container. Line them with baking paper in between as you stack them.

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Thyme-infused Berry Eton Mess

Prep time

20 min

Cook time

1 hr

Serves

2

Ingredients

  • 2 large egg whites, at room temperature
  • Pinch of cream of tartar
  • 80 ml castor sugar
  • A few drops of pink food colouring, optional

To serve

  • 125 ml cream, whipped
  • 45 ml icing sugar
  • 125 g cream cheese
  • 5 ml fresh thyme sprigs
  • Berry coulis, store bought / ready-made (click here for the homemade recipe)
  • 100 g fresh raspberries

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 120°C and lightly grease a baking tray with cooking spray or oil. Place parchment paper on the tray.
  2. With a hand or stand-alone automated mixer, beat the egg whites until frothy for about one minute. Add the cream of tartar, beating until soft peaks form, about 5 − 7minutes.
  3. Add the castor sugar about two tablespoons at a time, beating well after each addition, until all the sugar has been incorporated, and the mixture is thick and glossy with firm, white peaks. This will take about 8 minutes.
  4. Gently stir in a drop or two of the food colouring to only half of the meringue. This creates a marbling effect or ‘strokes’ of pink.
  5. Transfer half the meringue into a piping bag with a star nozzle. Pipe onto the prepared tray. Place dollops of the other half of the mixture on the piped meringue using a spoon.
  6. Bake both sets of meringue for 1 hour 20 minutes until crispy on the outside, but still slightly soft on the inside. Remove from the oven and cool completely.
  7. To make the filling: In a mixing bowl, whip the cream until soft peak stage. In another bowl, place the cream cheese with the icing sugar and a few thyme sprigs. Whisk until combined. Gently fold in the cream.
  8. To serve: Place a couple of meringues in a glass, followed by the thyme-infused filling, spoonfuls of berry coulis and the berries. Repeat until the glass is almost full.
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