These guys are so gorgeous. You could just place them on plates or in bowls and set them around as part of your kitchen decor. By the way, they are scrumptious! Make some. You know you want to. And you won't be sorry.
Ingredients for the meringues:
4 egg whites
2 1/4 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
Ingredients for the Ganache:
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup seedless raspberry jam
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
Directions for the meringues:
Preheat oven to 150 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. With a pen, trace around a small round object 2 1/2 inches in diameter. Continue tracing circles, leaving 1 inch between, until parchment paper is filled. (I put 15 to 18 on each sheet.) Repeat with second sheet pan. Set aside.
Place egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat on medium speed until light and foamy. When you lift the beater you should see a curve remain in the egg whites, not peaks. Sift cream of tartar into egg whites, make sure it is scattered over the top, not all in one place. Beat until mixed.
With mixer on low speed, very slowly add powdered sugar, 1/2 cup at a time. Mix well. Beat on medium high speed until egg whites are thick, smooth, satiny, and stiff peaks form when you lift the beaters. The peaks should stand up almost straight. This will take between 5 and 20 minutes.
Spoon the egg white mixture in mounds onto prepared cookie sheets filling each circle you drew. Or spoon mixture into a decorating bag fitted with a 2D Wilton tip (also called a drop petal tip). To pipe meringues with the decorating bag start in center of one circle and swirl outward in a circular motion until the circle is filled with meringue. Repeat until all circles are filled. You need to fit it all on the two sheets because you need to bake it all at once and not let the rest wait for later.
Bake for 2 hours or until meringues are crisp. Turn oven off and leave meringues in oven until completely cool. Remove from oven when cool.
Directions for the Ganache:
While meringues are baking, prepare Ganache. Place jam and cream in a small saucepan. Heat on medium low until small bubbles just start to appear and rise to the top around the edges. Do NOT boil. Add the chocolate chips and allow to set for 5 minutes. Whisk until mixture is smooth and all chocolate chips are melted and mixed in. Refrigerate for an hour or so to thicken Ganache.
Remove from refrigerator and whip the Ganache with an electric mixer on medium high until Ganache is light, fluffy and the color becomes lighter, about 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a zipper style bag. Cut a small piece off one corner of the bag.
Directions for finishing:
Pipe Ganache onto half of the cookies. Top with remaining cookies and press gently until filling spreads just to the edges. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to set Ganache.
I painted a few thin stripes of gel food coloring on the inside of my decorating bag, starting at the tip end and painting about halfway up the bag before adding the meringue. That's what gives them the pink accents.
Store in a cool dry place loosely covered. Do not store in refrigerator.