Meringue "Eggs" with Pistachio Custard and Chocolate Drizzle
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons shelled, roasted, unsalted pistachios (preferably natural color)
- 1 1/2 cups superfine sugar plus 2 tablespoons
- 4 cups whole milk
- 4 large eggs, separated
- 4 egg yolks
- 3 drops almond extract
- 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
Make "eggs": Whisk together 2 tablespoons superfine sugar and remaining milk in a deep skillet and bring to a bare simmer (milk should steam but not bubble). While milk is heating, beat egg whites in a mixer fitted with the whisk on high speed until they hold soft peaks. Gradually beat in remaining superfine sugar until meringue holds stiff peaks.
Using a large oval-shaped spoon, form 8 meringue "eggs" gently dropping them as formed into the simmering milk mixture. Keep the milk at a low simmer. Poach the meringues until set on the bottom, about 2 minutes, then carefully turn over and poach until set throughout, about 2 minutes more. Transfer with a slotted spoon to a plastic-wrap-lined baking pan and refrigerate until ready to serve. Repeat with remaining meringue to make 8 more eggs.
Make custard: Whisk together the 8 yolks with the pistachio cream and almond extract. Slowly add 1 cup of poaching liquid to the yolk mixture, whisking constantly. Slowly whisk mixture into the poaching liquid. Cook custard over moderately low heat, stirring constantly until it's the thickness of heavy cream, about 180 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer. Do not overcook.
Pour custard into 8 shallow bowls or rimmed plates and arrange meringues on top. Drizzle chocolate over meringues and custard.
Cook's Note: Meringues and custard can be made up to 6 hours ahead and chilled separately, covered. Bring to room temperature before serving.
Contains Raw Eggs: The Food Network Kitchen suggest caution in consuming raw and lightly cooked eggs due to the slight risk of salmonella or other food-borne illness. To reduce this risk, we recommend you use only fresh, properly refrigerated, clean grade A or AA eggs with intact shells, and avoid contact between the yolks or whites and the shell. For recipes that call for eggs that are raw or undercooked when the dish is served, use shell eggs that have been treated to destroy salmonella, by pasteurization or another approved method.
Recipe courtesy of Michael Chiarello