Bianchini are a traditional Sardinian sweet almost exactly like the typical french Meringue but with a couple very distinguishing features.
I was taught how to make Pardule while I was doing a project in Sardinia which incorporated traditional Sardinian Sweets and art installation: http://futurefantasmi.weebly.com/
What I really like about Bianchini is the delicate perfume which comes from the zest and the softness of the interior which I've never seen in a Meringues. What you will need to make your own Bianchini is:
• 500g sugar
• 200g egg whites
• Zest of 1 lemon
• 100g of slivered almonds (you can substitute the almonds for chocolate if you prefer)
- Optional: chocolate powder, a chocolate bar for melting, decorative elements.
Step 1: Get Started...
- Separate the yolks from whites until you arrive at 200g of whites and place them in a steel mixing bowl. Next, add sugar to your egg whites.
- Heat a pot with water and place the mixing bowl in the heating water; the water should be warm enough to dissolve the sugar but not cook the eggs...so slightly warmer than skin temperature
- As your heating the egg/sugar mixture you want to make sure to stir the egg/sugar continuously while wiping down the sides of the mixing bowl. You will be done when most of the sugar has been dissolved in the egg whites. You can check to see if the sugar has mostly dissolved by rubbing the mixture between two fingertips; you should only be able to feel a few grains of sugar...also, the mixture should be white and glossy. This process should take about ten to fifteen minutes.
Step 2: Whisk It.
- Whisk the mixture with an electric mixer or 2 forks (although with two forks the mixing time could be as much as 2 hours) until you get hard peaks.
- Fold the lemon zest into the mixture.
- Fold the sliced almonds into the mixture (but before you do, check out the next step).
Step 3: *on a Side Note...
- Pipe little mushroom caps onto your baking tray lined with parchment paper.
- Pipe skinny mushroom stems onto the parchment paper, making sure to have a roughly equal amount of stems to caps.
- Sprinkle just the mushroom caps with cocoa powder.
- Bake caps and stems at 100°c/210°f for ½ hour.
- While your mushroom caps and stems are baking melt some chocolate in a double boiler.
- Once your mushroom caps/stems have finished baking, remove them from the oven and create a small hole in the bottom of each mushroom cap, just big enough to insert the pointy tip of the mushroom stem.
- Use the chocolate as a glue to join the mushroom caps to the stems.
Step 4: Bake!
- With a spoon take a golf-ball sized portion of the mixture and place onto a baking sheet covered with parchment paper.
- Form the pyramids out of the mixture using a spoon, spatula and/or fork...you could also use a piping bag to form your Bianchini, if you want.
- Place the baking sheet near the bottom of a preheated oven set to 100°c/210°F for 1 hour. Cover another baking sheet with aluminum foil and place below the heating element, at the top of the oven, in order to keep the Bianchini white on top while still allowing them to fully cook.
If you want to try other traditional Sardinian recipes, visit this site: http://futurefantasmi.weebly.com/