This is my second attempt at these little buggers. I don’t think I am meant to make meringue anything. I figured I’d post this attempt, keep working on it and then someday post something really outstanding. But until then, the recipe works, my execution is just off. I tried to make them a cute button shape/size and this recipe requires them to be a bit bigger. But play around with them to make them the way you want.
* Place egg whites in a mixing bowl and let stand at room temperature for about 30 minutes.
* Line cookie sheets with foil or brown paper and set aside
* Add vanilla, peppermint extract and cream of tartar to egg whites. Beat with an electric mixer on medium to high speed until soft peaks form (tips curl). Gradually add sugar, 2 tablespoons at a time, beating until stiff, glossy peaks form (tips stand straight) and sugar dissolves. Add red food coloring gel sporadically in the mixture, so that when you fill the bag and pipe on to cookie sheet the red makes it look like a candy cane pattern – or similar to it.
* Using a pastry tube with a large star decorating tip, pipe cookies onto prepared cookie sheets (form cookies about 1-1/2 inches in diameter). Bake in a 300° F oven for 15 minutes. Turn off oven and let cookies dry in oven with door closed about 30 minutes. Let cool on cookie sheets for 5 minutes.