I’m not sure what these little guys should be called. Maybe it would be easier to tell you what’s in them. First of all I started with an ice-cream cone wafer, to remind me it’s supposed to be Summer here in Ireland. Then instead of filling the cone with ice-cream and sitting outside in the sunshine to eat it, I added lemon sponge batter and baked it in the oven. Next I took an apple corer and scooped out the middle and filled it with lemon and passionfruit curd. To top it off, I piped Italian meringue until it looked like the Mr. Whippy cone I was dreaming of. And then because I was itching to use my new toy, I turned on the blowtorch and toasted that meringue. Conveniently, I was reading a Heston book recently, where he suggested purchasing a ‘proper’ blowtorch rather than the flimsy cooks blowtorch. I duly dispatched Chub off to the DIY store, you remember how much he loves that place? where he kindly picked me up what I wanted. He didn’t furnish me with instructions on how to use it, but how difficult could it be? I set about using it, unsupervised, when he was out for the day with photography club. All was rosy and I was feeling very smug until I was finished and I couldn’t turn it off. No matter what way I was turning the wheel it wouldn’t switch off. I had visions of standing and holding the lighting blowtorch until he returned to rescue me hours later. Fortunately, after the initial 4 minutes of sheer panic I managed to get it off. What a relief!
If you don’t have a blowtorch, then just place the meringue-d cones into a very hot oven for a few minutes while watching them carefully. As this is an Italian meringue, there is no need to cook the meringue for a long period of time to ‘cook’ the egg whites. The hot sugar syrup cooks the meringues and makes a fluffy marshmallow type meringue.
There are a few steps to this project, but all are very simple! To do ahead, prepare the lemon and passionfruit curd a few days in advance, or use bought good quality curd.
Meringue cake cones – Makes 14
Lemon & passionfruit curd recipe – here
Lemon bun cones – Ingredients
175g caster sugar, I usually use vanilla caster sugar
2 large eggs
175g self-raising flour
1 lemon, preferably unwaxed – otherwise wash really well in warm water
14 flat bottomed ice-cream cone wafers
Lemon bun cones – Method
Preheat the oven to 180 or 160 fan assisted.
In a freestanding mixer, cream together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy and pale in colour.
Beat the eggs and gradually add them to the butter and sugar mix.
Add the flour, I do this in the freestanding mixer and it works perfectly without making the sponge dense.
Add the lemon zest and the juice to the mixture.
Place the cones onto a baking tray and fill about 2/3 rds full.
Bake in the preheated oven until a skewer comes out clean, checking after 20 minutes.
Remove from oven and leave to cool.
Italian meringue – Ingredients
4 egg whites
pinch of salt
Italian meringue – Method
Now for the Italian meringue, it’s not scary, honest. Add the water and sugar to a small saucepan and put it on a high heat. Using a sugar thermometer bring it up to 118 degrees. In the meantime, have the egg whites, salt and pepper in a freestanding mixer and whisk until they egg whites are frothy. When the sugar and water have reached the correct temperature, pour the liquid slowly down the side of the mixing bowl on top of the egg whites. The mixer should be going on a high speed. Leave the mixer going for about 10 minutes on high. Your meringue is now cooked! Yippee!
Once cool, using an apple corer or a teaspoon to remove a small amount of the middle of the bun. Fill this hole with the curd.
Fill a piping bag with a star nozzle (I used a Wilton 1M) and then the meringue mixture. Pipe the mixture out on top of the cone. Use a blowtorch to toast the sides of the meringue or place in a hot oven for a few minutes, watching carefully. Or leave plain, it’s up to you!