You will need:
- 3 large room-temperature egg whites
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp peppermint extract
- 12 drops red food coloring
Preheat oven to 200°.
Beat egg whites and salt using an electric mixer on medium-high speed until white and foamy, about 1 minute.With mixer running, gradually add sugar in 3-4 installments, beating for 2 minutes between each addition. Continue beating until firm peaks form.
Dot coloring over surface of meringue but do not stir (the coloring will form swirls when piped). Spoon meringue into a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2″ tip and pipe 1/2 to 1″ rounds onto a tray lined with parchment paper sheet. Leave at least 1″ spaces between each meringue.
Bake meringues until dry but not brown, about 1 1/2 -2 hours. Allow them to cool completely (about 1 hour) before serving.
Note: image above shows Martha Stewart’s chocolate-filled meringues; to make:
Heat 1 cup heavy cream in a small saucepan over medium-low heat it starts to simmer. Pour hot cream into a small bowl containing 6 ounces of finely-chopped chocolate (you can use milk or semi-sweet chocolate, depending on personal preference) and allow to stand for 5 minutes as the chocolate melts. Gently stir until smooth, about 5 minutes. Let ganache cool at room temperature, stirring every 5 to 10 minutes, until thick enough to hold its shape, about 45 minutes. (If ganache sets before using, reheat in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water; repeat the cooling process). Sandwich a dollop of ganache between two meringues. Bon appetit!