Archive for the 'low carb' Category

17
Feb
12

Ginger Meringue Cake (Pavlova) w/Bananas, Ginger-Blueberry Sauce (Baked, Low Sugar-Fat)

[ Equipment: convection oven (preferred) or other LTB oven, baking sheet. For more information about the terminology in this recipe, see Low Temperature Baking: A Journey of 3 Paths ].

July 22, 2012: I now recommend that this cake be made with a wet-dry steam baking method to set the cake faster and 1 tablespoon of cornstarch in the batter for improved texture. Fill the water tray for 30 minutes of steam. See here for details. For a crispy crust, use 100% sugar. For a taller cake (and lower calories), use the sugar-sucralose blend.

Between the 2 kinds of meringue cakes, Pavlova and angel food, the Pavlova had the advantage of being easier to prepare, or so I thought. Over the months, I baked many, varying the amounts of cornstarch, lemon juice, flavorings, all-sugar vs. sucralose-sugar blends, preparation procedures. The crust on a typical Pavlova sinks and cracks as it cools. The version presented here has a thinner crust that cracks only a little and doesn’t sink much at all.

The picture above shows a maple Pavlova meringue with substantial cracking and sinking. The main differences between it and this recipe are the amount of cornstarch – only half as much in the Ginger cake and the reduced baking time – 30 minutes less for the ginger cake. Less cornstarch didn’t appreciably alter the taste of the meringue (it still had the starchy characteristic of a Pavlova), but it did help the meringue hold its shape longer in the cooler oven. More cornstarch seemed to create a slicker batter.

Another reason for the spreading appeared to be the fact that I mixed in granulated white sugar instead of the caster sugar specified in almost all recipes. Granulated sugar didn’t dissolve quickly, and the left-over grains may have caused the structure of whipped egg whites to collapse under heat. My solution was to add the sugar while the whites were still liquid, before they began drying out from the suspension of air bubbles from the whipping. The maple meringue also contained 100% sugar, which may have contributed to the fragile crispness that dammed batter as it formed.

Having said all that, the batter spread made larger disks of meringue, which could then serve more people. One time, it came out in a 10=inch round that was about 3/8-inch thick (see picture above). It easily could serve 8 by piling more fruit and whipped cream over it. The batter in this recipe resists spreading. The ginger cake started out as a 5-1/2 round and came out measuring 7 inches in diameter. For a larger cake, make a larger round with the meringue before baking.

The Pavlova is fat-free, gluten-free and low sugar. In place of the fat-free Cool Whip topping, I would beat evaporated skimmed milk until thick and then sweeten it with sucralose to taste. Those who don’t like no=calorie sweeteners could increase the amount of granulated white sugar to 1/2 cup.

Makes 4 servings (up to 8 servings – see text)
– 130 calories per serving (4 servings)
– Oven Temperature: 250°F/121°C

Meringue Cake:

  • 3 large egg whites (room temperature)
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup sugar + 8 packets sucralose or 1/2 cup sugar (see text)
  • 1/2 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons powdered ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder

Ginger Blueberry Sauce and Cake Topping:

  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 packet sucralose (see text)
  • 1/8 teaspoon powdered ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • 1/2 banana, sliced
  • 1 cup no-fat sweetened whipped cream or no-fat Cool Whip topping

Ginger Blueberry Sauce Method:

1. In a heatproof dish, lightly mash 1/2 cup of fresh blueberries.

2. Add powdered ginger, sucralose and mix.

3. In a small dish, mix the cornstarch and water. Add to the blueberries and stir.

4. Microwave on HIGH for about 1-1/2 minutes until thickened.

5. Cool for a few minutes. Mix in 1/2 cup of fresh blueberries. Set aside.

Pavlova Method:

1. In a large bowl, beat the egg whites, lemon juice and salt until foamy.


2. Beat in sugar or sugar-sucralose blend in 3 or 4 portions and beat to the soft peak stage. Then add vanilla extract and beat to the stiff peak stage. Egg whites should still be glossy but not wet.

Note: granulated white sugar will not dissolve completely in stiffly beaten egg whites. Add the sugar at the foamy stage only or substitute a finely ground sugar.


3. In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch, ginger, chili powder until well combined. Fold mixture into the egg whites.


4. Set a silicone baking mat on a baking sheet or cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. Gently spoon the egg white batter onto the baking sheet and shape into 5-1/2 inch round. The top should be slightly concave.

The pavlova will spread a little as it bakes. In my oven, a 5-1/2 inch disk of meringue evens out to about 7-inches.

5. Bake at 250°F/121°C for 30 minutes. If the base of the meringue cake is a golden brown and will burn, reduce heat to 200°F/93°C and continue baking for another 30 – 45 minutes, until the surface of the cake is dry and the sides are lightly golden. Turn off the oven and allow the cake to cool completely in the oven.

If the cooled cake feels soggy on the surface, dry it out in a 200°F/93°C for 10 to 15 minutes.

6. Transfer the pavlova to a serving plate.

7. Cover the top of the cake with a layer of sliced bananas.

8. Spread on a layer of no-fat whipped cream or whipped topping.

9. Pour the ginger-blueberry sauce and blueberries over the whipped cream. Slice and serve.

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31
Mar
11

Ginger-Coffee Coffee Cake (Baked w/ Low-Carb Option)

[ Equipment: 7-inch springform pan or removable bottom cake pan, oven or slow cooker with temperature control. For more information about the terminology in this recipe, see Low Temperature Baking: A Journey of 3 Paths ].

The majority of coffee-flavored cake recipes list instant coffee crystals or powder as the main flavoring agent. I’ve never liked the processed taste of instant coffee, and LTB cakes don’t obscure the nuances of their ingredients. For my version, the instant coffee has been replaced with a brewed coffee extract and finely ground coffee (unbrewed espresso), amped up with a hint of cocoa. To give the cake a bit of complexity, I searched online for spiced coffees and found two ginger coffees: the Indonesian Kopi Jahe brewed from Java Arabica beans and the Yemeni Qishr, traditionally more like a tea infusion of dried coffee berries (cascara), although it can be based on one of their Moka coffees. Ginger dominates in both, but recipes for Qishr may feature a medley of spices, like the blend of ginger and nutmeg here.

This cake recipe has been gestating for several weeks, because I’ve been testing new LTB ideas and techniques along with the basic recipe: baking-soda-only leavening, low-carb flours, new constructed ingredients. This recipe marks my switchover to baking soda as the primary leavener in baked goods other than breads. In my experience, LTB ovens don’t seem to generate the high heat necessary to fully activate baking powder, and baked goods don’t rise as high as they should. Baking soda has been producing consistently superior results in my tests of cakes and muffins. However, I’m not throwing away my baking powder. There are times when a recipe requires a heat-activated leavener or the time-to-oven lags and the baking soda reaction would fizzle out.

Baking soda reacts without heat but does need an acidic batter to effervesce bubbles. In this recipe, cultured buttermilk and lemon juice are the main sources of acid. To substitute for the 1/4 cup of buttermilk, try mixing 1/2 tablespoon of lemon juice and 1/4 cup of milk. That’s more lemon juice than the standard substitute. I culture my own buttermilk and like it extra sour. A homemade, long-fermentation (more than 12 hours) yogurt should also work.

For the low-carb cake, the recipe specifies 3/4 teaspoon of baking soda. The additional quarter teaspoon compensates for the ground flax seed, a volume substitute for the sugar, which bulks up and gains weight as it absorbs water (see the discussion of sugar substitution below). With the 3/4 teaspoon of baking soda, the cake should rise to about 1-1/4 inches. If it doesn’t make it that high, try increasing the baking soda to 1 teaspoon (add another teaspoon or so of lemon juice if the additional soda makes the cake taste soapy).

After gluten-free baking, low-carb baking has been a hot food topic for weight loss and healthier eating. The key ingredient in low-carb baking is low-carb flour. Naturally low-carb flours like oat flour, almond meal, coconut flour or flaxseed meal fail as a replacement for all-purpose flour for a variety of reasons (texture, taste, density), hence the proliferation of commercial low-carb flour blends. Because none of the markets near me sell those baking mixes, I make my own. I began with an Atkins Diet baking mix clone I found on the net, and despite trials of different ratios of protein and flour, it made cakes with a texture and taste like a sponge dipped in soy milk. I moved on to formulating my own mix from studying the nutrition panels on 3 popular commercial baking mixes (Atkins Cuisine, Bob’s Red Mill and CarbQuik).

For this recipe, the low-carb flour is a blend of soy flour, wheat gluten and oat flour (SGO flour) in a 1:1:1 ratio. These 3 ingredients frequently appear in the commercial mixes and are available at my local markets. To diminish the beany aftertaste of the soy flour (a common complaint), I toast it in the microwave. In a finished cake, there is a strong taste of oats, however, which, if objectionable, might be lessened by substituting wheat bran or oat bran for some or all of the oat flour. Notwithstanding, I count this flour blend as a great success with a soft crumb and nice rise. Soy flour blends can bake a little faster than regular flour, but in this recipe, the 2 cakes track closely in oven time, although the low-carb comes out with a darker crust. A cup of the blend has a carb count of 34 grams (8 grams of fiber) and 480 calories, very comparable to the commercial mixes.

After the flour, the second huge source of carbohydrates in pastries generally is sugar. For the low-carb version of the ginger coffee cake, I replace the sugar in the cake and topping with a blend of aspartame and stevia. I happened to have these low-cal sweeteners in my food bin, and think they work well together. To my taste buds, stevia lacks the intense top notes of regular sugar, whereas aspartame has the top notes, but not the full body of sugar. They are low bulk sweeteners, and to compensate for volume of regular sugar, I add half as much ground flax seed – only half because flax seed expresses strong hygroscopic and mucilaginous properties.

Aspartame breaks down when heated, perhaps even under LTB temperatures. I read in the Wikipedia that it can be stabilized by encasing it in fat, so I mix it in oil or butter before adding it to the batter. I can’t say how well this technique protects the aspartame from heating because some of the oiled aspartame dissolves when mixed with liquid, but I can say that I can taste the sweetness in the cake. The recipe specifies packets of the sweeteners. Each packets of aspartame or stevia is equivalent to 2 teaspoons of sugar for a total equivalence of 16 teaspoons of regular sugar. That’s more sweetener than needed to replace 1/4 cup of regular sugar, but suits my taste preference.

I’ve made these cakes with up to a tablespoon of powdered ginger to obtain a strong ginger taste, but the final recipe reduces that by half, because I think the nutmeg really amps up the ginger flavor, punctuated by bursts of ginger from the ginger chips. Ginger chips are nothing more than chopped candied ginger, packaged for commercial sale. I don’t have them in the low-carb cake, because two tablespoons contain 24 grams of carbohydrates. For the low-carb cake, I substitute ginger-pressed raisins, a constructed ingredient, at 15 grams of carbohydrates. That’s still a significant source of carbs, but it’s spread out over the entire cake, and the pressing technique concentrates the ginger flavor in sweet nuggets without the mess of cooking in a syrup.

The other constructed ingredient in this recipe is the coffee-filled chocolate raisins. I had intended to decorate the top of the cake by strewing small chocolate coffee beans (such as the Koppers Mini Mocha Coffee Beans) over the topping. Regular-size chocolate coffee beans clash with the scale of the cake. However, no markets near me sell the mini beans, so I substituted with homemade coffee-filled chocolate raisins, very tasty and not much more effort to make than the ginger-pressed raisins. In the low-carb cake, I omit the chocolate raisins and, the ginger-pressed raisins could be omitted too, if desired.

Two ingredients comprise the coffee flavoring: brewed coffee extract and coffee bean powder. The extract colors and flavors the batter; the coffee bean powder boosts the extract’s flavor. I made the extract with a canned medium roast coffee (Folgers Special Roast, but any brand should work). I think the darker roasts impart more flavors to the extract. The coffee bean powder is the same canned coffee but very fine ground (espresso or finer) in a coffee or spice grinder (it must be ground to a fine powder or it will turn the cake gritty). A tiny bit of cocoa powder highlights the mocha notes in the coffee.

Note: I’ve listed the ingredients for the low-carb cake in parentheses. Several steps in the cake method show pictures of the low-carb batter or the finished cake.

Makes 8 servings
– 210/180 (low carb) calories per serving
– 31g-1g/10g-3g (low carb) carbohydrates-fiber per serving
– Oven Temperature: 250°F/121°C

Cake:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour (low carb: 1 cup SGO flour, see below and see text)
  • 1/4 cup sugar (low carb: 4 packets aspartame + 4 packets stevia + 1/8 cup ground flax seed – see text)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda (low carb: 3/4 teaspoon baking soda – see text)
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely ground coffee powder (not instant coffee, see text)
  • 1/8 teaspoon cocoa
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger (see text)
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg (see text)
  • 2 tablespoons beaten egg
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup coffee extract (see text)
  • 1/4 cup cultured buttermilk
  • 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice (low carb: 1 tablespoon lemon juice)
  • 2 tablespoons ginger chips 180/24g (low carb: 2 tablespoons ginger-pressed raisins, see text and see below)
  • 2 tablespoons mini chocolate coffee beans or coffee-filled chocolate raisins, optional, see text and see below (low carb: omit this ingredient)

Streusel Topping:

  • 1/4 cup rolled oats, chopped
  • 1/8 cup baker’s coconut, chopped (low carb: 1/8 cup unsweetened shredded coconut, chopped)
  • 1/8 cup all-purpose flour (low carb: 1/8 cup GSO flour)
  • 1/8 cup sugar (low carb: 2 packets aspartame plus 2 packets stevia plus 1 tablespoon ground flax seed – see text)
  • 1/4 teaspoon powdered ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • pinch of salt
  • 1-1/2 tablespoon butter (low carb: 4 teaspoons butter)

SGO (Soy-Wheat Gluten-Oats) Flour (makes 1-1/2 cups):

  • 1/2 cup soy flour (will be toasted)
  • 1/2 cup oat flour
  • 1/2 cup wheat gluten

Coffee Extract (makes about 1/4 cup):

  • 2 tablespoons ground coffee
  • 1/2 cup boiling water

Ginger-Pressed Raisins (makes 1/8 cup):

  • 2 tablespoons raisins (see text)
  • 1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger

Coffee-Filled Chocolate Raisins (makes 1/8 cup):

  • 2 tablespoons chocolate covered raisins (see text)
  • 1/2 teaspoon coffee bean powder or unbrewed espresso coffee

Method: Low-Carb Soy-Gluten-Oat Flour

1. Pour the soy flour into a heatproof bowl. Place bowl in microwave and heat on HIGH power for 30 seconds. Remove and stir flour. Repeat heat and stir procedure until the bitter aftertaste has been softened (4 minutes in an 800W microwave). Taste a tiny amount of the flour after each stirring. Do not overprocess.

2. The heating lightly toasts the flour and improves the flavor. In the above picture, the toasted soy flour on the right is a shade darker than the untoasted soy flour on the left.

3. In a large bowl, measure out the toasted soy flour, oat flour and wheat gluten.

4. Whisk the flours until well combined. Optional: sift the flour to break up any small lumps or clumps.

5. Store in an airtight container.

Method: Ginger-Pressed Raisins

1. Roughly chop raisins, each one being cut into halves or thirds, and put in a small dish. The pressing technique works best with more raisin flesh exposed.

2. Sprinkle dried ginger over the raisins and mix to coat. Then with the back of a spoon, press the ginger into the raisins until all of the loose ginger has been adhered or absorbed.

Method: Coffee-Filled Chocolate Raisins

1. With a sharp paring knife, cut each raisin candy about 2/3 of the way through.

2. GENTLY open the candy raisin just enough to expose the inner flesh.

3. With a thin spatula or a small blunt knife, scoop a pinch of the coffee powder into the candy raisin and press close. Work quickly because the heat from the hands will melt the chocolate.

Method: Coffee Extract

1. Put the ground coffee in a small bowl and pour in boiling water. Cover and allow to brew for at least 1 hour.

2. Strain coffee mixture and discard grounds.

Method: Topping

1. In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Add the butter cut into small chunks.

2. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or fork or rub the mixture between the hands until the dry ingredients have been evenly coated.

3. Cover and store in the refrigerator until ready to use.

Method: Cake

1. Pre-heat the oven to 250°F/121°C.

Grease a 7-inch springform pan or cake pan with removable bottom. Cut out a 7-inch diameter circle from wax paper or parchment paper and place in bottom of pan. Grease the top of the paper. Low carb cake only: The low-carb batter sticks more, so I recommend flouring the pan with oat flour for easier unmolding later.

2. In a large bowl, whisk the the dry ingredients together. Low carb cake only: Include the stevia packets, but leave out the aspartame sweetener.

3. Pour the vegetable oil into a small dish. Low-carb cake only: Thoroughly mix in the aspartame powder and make sure to break up any lumps or clumps.

4. Mix in the remaining wet ingredients.

5. Pour wet ingredients into the flour mixture and stir to form a thick batter. Do not overmix. The baking soda reaction begins immediately, so work quickly from here on and try not to deflate the batter.

6. Add ginger ships, chopped candied ginger or ginger-pressed raisins. Stir 2 or 3 times to incorporate.

Note: Steps 6 to 12 have pictures of both the original and low-carb cakes. The original cake displays above the low-carb version.

7.  Pour the batter into pan and if necessary, spread the batter with a spatula or back of a spoon to evenly distribute.

8. Sprinkle and/or crumble the topping over the batter.

9. Sprinkle optional mini chocolate coffee beans or coffee-filled chocolate raisins over the topping.

10. Cover the top of the pan with a sheet of aluminum foil and secure by tying it around the rim with string. With a knife or scissors, cut out a 2-inch hole in the center of the foil. Then, with a 1/8-inch wood skewer, punch 12 holes, evenly spaced, about half way between the rim and the center hole.


11. Bake at 250°F/121°C for 50 to 60 minutes. The cake is ready when a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean. Low-carb cake only: The low-carb batter bakes faster. Begin checking for doneness after 45 minutes.

12. Let cool for 15 to 30 minutes. Unmold and continue cooling on a rack.

13. Slice and serve.

<a href=”https://vaporbaker.files.wordpress.com/2010/08/bizco7a1.jpg”><img class=”aligncenter size-full wp-image-1399″ src=”https://vaporbaker.files.wordpress.com/2010/08/bizco7a1.jpg&#8221; alt=”” width=”550″ height=”413″ /></a>

8. Grease a 7-inch springform pan or cake pan with removable bottom. Cut out a 7-inch diameter circle from wax paper or parchment paper and place in bottom of pan. Grease the top of the paper.

02
Jul
10

Chocolate Almond Meringue Spiral Cookies (Dehydrated)

[ Equipment: Food dehydrator or dehydration oven. For more information about the terminology in this recipe, see Low Temperature Baking: A Journey of 3 Paths ].

These crisp and lighter-than-air cookies taste reminiscently of an Almond Joy candy bar, wispy flavors of chocolate, almonds and coconut. Like French macarons (same basic ingredients but in different proportions and formed with different technique), these cookies dissolve quickly in the mouth, briefly concentrating the flavors on the tongue before vanishing to a trace.

They are one of a series of meringue cookies, from my experiments with dehydrated meringue as a raw food. Although dehydrated raw meringue qualifies as a raw food with invaluable properties for raw cuisine, it’s rarely seen in raw recipes, perhaps because many raw foodies are also vegan or no-eggs vegetarians or perhaps because unpasteurized egg whites pose a bacterial contamination risk (though contamination is far more likely in the yolk than in the white).

From an LTB point of view, standard meringue cookies are already baked in a cool oven at 250°F, so warm air baking them in a dehydrator is sort of fringe of the fringe. Yet, dehydrated raw meringues have a different qualities than slow-baked meringues. They crumble and dissolve almost as soon as they touch the tongue, whereas the slow-baked ones are crunchier with some browning on the surface. Unfortunately, raw meringues have a shorter shelf life.

This recipe describes 2 ways to prepare the meringue for dehydration. The first way is simple raw meringue that doesn’t contact any heat source until it goes to the dehydrator. The second is a type of Swiss meringue, where the egg whites are partially cooked over hot water as they are whipped. Dehydrated Swiss meringue has a texture closer to a slow-baked meringue, but dehydrating the cookies preserves the raw flavors of the other ingredients. While raw meringue cookies stored in an air tight container will last for 1 to 2 weeks only, Swiss meringue cookies will keep for about a month.

The lemon or lime juice is for stabilizing the meringue and brightens the flavor of the cookies with citrus. Cream of tartar stabilizes the eggs whites as well as lemon or lime juice, but does not have the same taste. Do NOT omit this ingredient. Meringue that hasn’t been stabilized will separate during dehydration, and the liquid that collects under the cookies will dry and glue the cookies to the drying sheet.

The meringue is only mildly sweet so as to emphasize the chocolate, almond and coconut flavors. If the cookies will not be fully raw, I recommend toasting half of the almond meal (very lightly sprayed with vegetable oil)  in a 250°F oven for about an hour to intensify the nutty flavor. To enhance the sweetness and layer flavor without substantially increasing the calorie tally, sprinkle the top of the cookies with a little vanilla sugar or plain sugar before dehydrating.

As they dehydrate, the cookies will lose about 10% of their size. I piped the batter free-hand, and the cookies have an uneven, rustic look. For cookies with a neater appearance, pipe the batter into a greased 2-inch cookie cutter as a mold.

Makes 1 dozen cookies
– 30 calories per cookie
– Oven Temperature: 115-120°F/46-49°C in a dehydrator

  • 1 egg white
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon lemon or lime juice or cream of tartar
  • 1/8 cup sugar or equivalent powdered sweetener
  • 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon almond meal or almond flour (1/2 raw and 1/2 toasted if desired, see text)
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped baker’s coconut or unsweetened coconut
  • 1/8 cup mini chocolate chips or finely chopped cocoa nibs
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar or vanilla sugar for sprinkling (optional)

1. Combine almond flour and coconut in a small bowl. Set aside.

2. In a medium metal bowl, beat egg white, lemon/lime juice and salt until frothy.

3.  Add sugar and beat until foamy.

4. This step makes either a raw meringue or a Swiss meringue. See the text above for more information about these types of meringue.

To make raw meringue, continue beating the egg white on high speed until stiff peaks form.

To make a Swiss meringue, heat a saucepan of water (at least 1 inch) to simmering and turn off heat. Place bowl over saucepan (water must not touch the bottom of the bowl) and beat on high speed until stiff peaks form. Continue mixing for another 2 minutes. Mixture will be thick and shiny and will mound in the beater. Remove bowl from saucepan.

5.  Fold in almond flour-coconut mixture.

6. Cut off one bottom corner of a plastic food bag, leaving a 1/2-inch opening. Fill the bag with the batter, push out any air in the bag and squeeze batter to the clipped corner.

The following steps apply to my Presto Chango dehydrator fitted with a 9-inch diameter pan as a heat distributor and tray support. Follow manufacturer’s instructions if drying in a commercial dehydrator.

7. Cut out a 8-1/2 inch circle of aluminum foil or parchment paper or wax paper as a drying sheet. Foil and parchment paper are preferable, because the cookies may stick  steadfast to wax paper. Turn an 8-inch cake pan upside down as a pedestal. Sprinkle a few drops of water on the surface of the pan and center the drying sheet on it. Press down and smooth out any wrinkles. The water will act as a temporary glue. Liberally grease the surface of the drying sheet.

8. Pipe out batter onto the drying sheet in spirals from the inside out to form a dozen cookies, each about 2 inches  in diameter.

9. Sprinkle each cookie with mini chocolate chips. Very lightly, press any loose chips into the batter. If desired, sprinkle the cookies with sugar or vanilla sugar (see text).

10. Lift the edge of the foil or paper disk and slide drying platform (splatter screen) underneath. Put the drying platform back into the dehydrator and position so that the drying sheet is centered over the heat distributor (cake pan).

11. Finish assembling dehydrator. If the batter is a Swiss meringue, dehydrate the cookies for about 6 hours at 115-120°F. Raw meringue has a higher moisture content and should be dried for about 8 hours. When done, the surface of the cookies will be dry, although they may bend a bit when pulled off the drying sheet.

12. Let the cookies cool for an hour or longer before separating them from the drying sheet. The cooling is important, because warm meringue will stick more than cold meringue. If the chocolate chips are too soft, put cookies in a single layer in a plastic container with an airtight lid and refrigerate for a few minutes until the chips are solid again. The lid must be tight or the cookies will absorb moisture in the fridge or freezer.

13. Serve or store the cookies in an airtight container.