Eton mess – Improv Challenge, May 2012

17 May
Strawberries - the taste of summer!

Strawberries – the taste of summer!

The theme for the “Improv Challenge” this month is Strawberries and Cream. Every month the challenge takes 2 ingredients and you have to make it into a recipe to post on the third Thursday of the month. It is run by Kristen of “Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker”. 

Eton Mess

Eton Mess

Eton Mess is a simple summer dessert of meringue, whipped cream and strawberries mixed together and was originally made and served at the English public school of the same name. I decided to make Eton Mess because I had egg whites to use up, which I could put in the meringues and it is a great summer dessert which I will probably serve at the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Celebration next month.

Homemade meringues

Homemade meringues

You can make your own meringues following the recipe I include here, or you can buy meringues and crush them up – it is entirely up to you!

To make the little meringues:


2 large egg whites

100g golden caster sugar


1. Whisk the egg whites until they form stiff peaks. I use a free-standing mixer with a whisk attachment, but you can use a hand held electric whisk or indeed by hand if you have a lot of stamina and a strong arm!

Egg whites whisked to stiff peaks

Egg whites whisked to stiff peaks

2. Add the sugar one tablespoon at a time and whisk all the time. The mixture should be stiff and thick and sort of marshmallow like.

The meringue should be thick and creamy

The meringue should be thick and creamy

3. Using a piping bag with a smooth, large nozzle or indeed a plastic bag with the corner cut off, pipe small mounds onto a baking sheet covered with baking parchment. This mixture makes about 50 2-3cm (1 inch) meringues. You can make bigger ones if you wish or just use a spoon to make mounds of meringue.

Pipe 1 inch meringues

Pipe 1 inch meringues

The mixture makes at least 50

The mixture makes at least 50

4. Put in an oven at 130C and immediately reduce the temperature to 100C. Bake for 2 hours and then turn the oven off and leave in the oven to cool.

The cooled meringues

The cooled meringues

To make the Eton Mess (serves 4):


400g strawberries, washed and hulled

300ml double cream, whipped to stiff peaks

1 quantity of meringues


1. Take 8-10 strawberries and blend to a puree. Cut the rest into halves or quarters depending on their size. You could reserve some whole strawberries and some little meringues for decoration if you wish.

2. Whip the cream to stiff peaks and mix half the strawberry puree with it to make a rippled effect.

3. Layer the strawberry puree, whipped cream, strawberries and meringues in glasses or serving dishes so they look pretty.

Dessert is served

Dessert is served


18 Responses to “Eton mess – Improv Challenge, May 2012”

  1. Melody♪♫ May 17, 2012 at 3:06 pm #

    I’ve never made Eton Mess, but if it tastes anything like a trifle, I’m for it!
    Looks beautiful!

    • bakingaitch May 17, 2012 at 3:20 pm #

      Thank you. I think is tastes better than a trifle! It has crunch!

  2. Kristen May 17, 2012 at 3:20 pm #

    I still have Eton Mess on my list of things to try. It sounds so light and tasty.

    • bakingaitch May 17, 2012 at 3:54 pm #

      Yes…practically like eating air, so hardly any calories!! 😉

  3. {Adventuresindinner} May 17, 2012 at 6:19 pm #

    There just isn’t a better dessert than Eton mess. I love your version C:

  4. Susan May 17, 2012 at 10:04 pm #

    I love the name! I am going to have to try that for sure!

  5. Brianne @ Cupcakes & Kale Chips May 18, 2012 at 12:49 am #

    This sounds like a perfect summer dessert!

    • bakingaitch May 18, 2012 at 6:03 am #

      If only the rain would stop.and the sun would shine a bit in the UK this year…

  6. Lynn May 18, 2012 at 1:21 am #

    Oh, I love Eton Mess! It’s one of my favorite desserts. Sometimes, I jazz it up with a little lime zest and mint chiffonade 🙂

  7. FoodBabbles May 18, 2012 at 9:54 pm #

    I had never heard of Eton Mess! Thanks for teaching me about something new today. I’ll definitely need to make this in the very near future. Wonderful post!

  8. bakingaddict May 18, 2012 at 11:16 pm #

    Love Eton Mess – I made meringues too and an eton mess with the leftover meringue. Definitely very fitting for the upcoming Jubilee celebrations 🙂

  9. Deanna Segrave-Daly (@tspbasil) May 18, 2012 at 11:42 pm #

    I am new to Eton Mess but am already in love! Looks delicious!

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