Pumpkin Spice Meringue Cookies

IMG_4981Last Christmas we sent out yummy baked treats as a part of everyone’s Christmas gift.  Some of those treats were peppermint meringue cookies or forgotten kisses. Crunchy and light, its easy to gobble down five of them without realizing it.  With our pumpkin bread being such a hit in our home, I tried out to make a pumpkin version of meringue cookies.  Thus, the pumpkin spice meringue cookie was born.  Here is the recipe (I used the recipe from http://www.foodnetwork.com and tweaked it):

IMG_4943

2 large egg whites, at room temperature

1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar

2/3 cup superfine granulated sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon pumpkin spice

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon allspice

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat egg whites until foamy. Add the cream of tartar and beat until fluffy but not at all dry. (Be careful not to over beat.) Add the sugar gradually, about 3 tablespoons at a time. When 1/2 of the sugar is added, add the vanilla extract and spices. Continue beating and adding remaining sugar in batches, until all the sugar is dissolved and the meringue is very shiny and tight. Working one teaspoon at a time, push a teaspoonful of meringue from the tip of 1 teaspoon with the back of another teaspoon place on the lined baking sheets, leaving 1-inch of space between cookies. Sprinkle additional cinnamon and spice on top. Place baking sheets in the preheated oven (350 degrees) and turn the oven off. Leave the cookies (undisturbed) in the oven for at least 2 hours and up to overnight, or until cookies are crisp and dry. Humidity can affect how they bake, so its best to do this on a day when you will not be expecting any rain.  I use nonstick pans which means I can opt out of parchment paper, if your pans are not nonstick – please use parchment paper!IMG_4976