No recent transmission due to totally unexpected family bereavement.   Now trying to move on.

The sous-chef delivered a super talk on his time during the Falklands conflict (Operation Corporate) for the Wickham Society as the 40th anniversary approaches.

My book totters towards publication: images captioned; final typesetting checked; just the recipe index to complete.   Instead of months, it has taken years while I struggle with recovery from the accident but there’s light at the end of the tunnel – more soon …

It has been good to cook again with the Open Sight team.   We have been going back-to-basics and this month featured eggs: pricking the end before boiling (for kedgeree, sandwiches, Scotch eggs; making mayonnaise in seconds; creating crème Brule.

One of them threw down the gauntlet in relation to Pavlova and I bounced back with this easy meringue roll which is a perfect cook-and-freeze dessert.   You can imagine, without sight, creating a suitably circular, sculpted classic dessert of soft sticky stuff is not so easy.   My answer is to use the same mix but roll it up which makes serving easier too.   They’ll post the video on their YouTube channel soon:


4 egg whites.

225g caster sugar.

1 teaspoon cornflour.

1 teaspoon white wine vinegar.

1 teaspoon vanilla paste.


Whisk the egg whites until firm to the touch.

Gradually whisk in the sugar followed by the cornflour, vinegar and vanilla paste to create a firm meringue.

Spread the mix as evenly as possible on the base of a rectangular

roasting tray (about 8×10 inches), neatly lined with baking parchment.

Cover with another sheet of parchment and cook for 30-40 minutes 150C, Gas 2.   The meringue should feel firm but soft.

Remove from oven and allow to cool for a few minutes.

Place a board over the tray and the top sheet of parchment.

Turn the whole construction upside down so the top of the meringue is on the sheet of baking parchment on the board.   Gently remove the baking parchment that lined the tray to reveal the base of the meringue.

Cover with whipped cream and a sharp flavoured fruit such as raspberries before rolling up from one short end of the rectangle to the other like a Swiss roll.

Chill to firm up before serving.

My tips:

Make sure the eggs have been out of the fridge for at least 24 hours to reach room temperature and, ideally, use last week’s eggs for this recipe.

For freezing, add about a tablespoon of liqueur while whipping the cream to avoid it splitting in the freezer.   Defrost in the fridge before serving.


Next time (1030 on 11 April) we will prepare for Easter entertaining with incredibly easy roast chicken and potatoes plus other trimmings – how to enjoy guests without slaving over a hot stove!



© 2024 - Penny Melville-Brown
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