From my story,“You Look Like You’ve Seen a Ghost”
Makes about 24 2 to 3-inch ghosts
(This recipe makes meringues that are crunchy on the outside and slightly gooey on the inside.)
5 egg whites
1 ½ cup superfine sugar
¼ tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Small black dragees* (the eyes)
Prepare two cookie sheets by lining with parchment paper.
Preheat your oven to 225˚F.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites at medium-high speed just until frothy, about a minute.
Add the salt and cream of tartar. Continue beating and very slowly add the sugar. Continue beating until the whites have become very thick (although not dry), and glossy. (The whites should hold their peak when the beater is pulled out of the bowl.)
Add the vanilla extract, and continue beating for another fifteen or twenty seconds, just until it has been absorbed into the meringue.
Transfer the meringue to a large piping bag fitted with a plain, wide tip (I used an Ateco #808*). Pipe ghost shapes onto the lined cookie sheets. Set the black dragees into the meringue ghosts as eyes. (Bad news: I used a pair of tweezers to set the eyes, and the back of the tweezers to draw the smile into the guy holding the banner in the photo above. Be patient. Have fun.)
Bake in the preheated oven for fifteen minutes, checking frequently to make sure the meringues do not brown. After fifteen minutes, turn the oven off and leave the meringues there for several hours to dry.