Making Meringue: The History and Evolution of Our Favorite Dessert
Who can say no to a decadent chocolate meringue? Whether it’s freshly made at home or prepared and bought from the store, a meringue is always a treat for anyone who loves to munch on sweets. But did you know that this delightful confection has been around for centuries? Here, we take a closer look at the humble beginnings of the meringue and how it has evolved throughout the years:
Where it all started
History books tell us that meringue was invented in a village called “Meiringen” in Switzerland where villagers served it as a simple dessert for their families. In the beginning of the 18th century, an Italian chef named Gasparini took that homemade recipe and made it better, so he could win the heart of Princess Maria who was betrothed to King Louis XV.
However, there are some contradictions to this claim from the French, especially since the name “meringue” was said to have been mentioned in Francois Massialot’s cookbook in 1692 and the book was later translated into English in 1706. Still, historians believe that the story of Gasparini is more credible than others.
How it evolved
Whatever the said origins of the humble meringue were, it only became the meringue that we know it today in the beginning of the 19th century when a French chef named Marie Antoine Careme used a pastry bag in making it. Soon, meringues became a popular confection around Europe where it was constantly requested by kings and queens. In fact, even the glamorous Marie Antoinette prepared meringue with her own hands while Queen Elizabeth I, loved the confection so much that she renamed it “kiss.”
How it’s going
Over the years, meringue has evolved from a simple dessert made with beaten egg white and sugar to now being added to a wide variety of confections that people have come to love and enjoy. In fact, different countries have also made different interpretations of the classic meringue and you can even buy your favorite chocolate meringue and cute meringue cookies in stores and online.
Some of the most popular desserts that use meringue include the very decadent pavlova, which is a classic Australian dessert made for the Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova. You also have meringata, which takes the simple meringue recipe but done in a semifreddo version and then there’s tarte au citron meringue, which has become such a huge trend in the pastry world that a lot of pastry chefs are trying to re-create their version of it. The simple tart with lemon curd is given new life in this recipe with the addition of a meringue that complements the tartness of the pastry itself.
Finally, there’s “Mont Blanc,” a famous meringue dessert that was created at the end of the 17th century and was featured in the famous movie back then called “Bianca” in one of the scenes by Nanni Moretti.
The history of meringue has come a long way, and we can definitely look forward to better versions of this classic dessert in the future. To get one of the best versions of this delicious dessert, contact Tidbits Fun Bites and check out all the meringue cookies flavors we offer, like the classics, chocolate meringue cookies and vanilla meringue cookies.