Monday, February 12, 2007

Microwave Magic

I have just discovered two brilliant things I can do with my microwaved, that I never suspected were possible. I don't use my microwave all that often, except for making porridge in the morning, and defrosting the stuff from my freezer. I do use it to cook vegetables, but am a bit snobby about the meat and two veg thing, so that doesn't happen a lot. I don't think either of these actually count as recipes, but I'm going to share them anyway, as completely bizarre (and very yummy) uses for your microwave. Both are courtesy of the forum at Simple Savings, my favourite place for collective kitchen wisdom.

Microwave Meringues
Beat one egg white. Add a tablespoon of vanilla extract, or maybe raspberry essence and a drop of pink food colouring. Then start sifting in icing sugar (not icing mixture!) until the mix resembles marzipan. I didn't think this would make enough meringues, so I used two egg whites. This may have been a bad move, because I ended up using around 500g of sugar. Consider yourself warned.
Roll six marble-sized balls, and place them around the edge of a plate in the microwave. Zap for 2 minutes on high. That's all! They puff up, and cook! If they are still soft on top, go another 30 seconds. This was really fun to watch, and I think I got about 60 meringues. I should have thought about what 'enough meringues' was before I started.

Serving suggestions: Really good with double cream and stewed fruit (especially if the fruit is a bit sour, because these meringues are really, really sweet). Also good crushed on icecream for extra crunch. And last week Jamie Oliver crushed meringue and poured rice pudding and strawberries all over it.

Microwave (fat free!) potato crisps
Slice one potato as thinly as possible. Place around the edge of a piece of baking paper, on a plate in the microwave. Sprinkle with salt. Zap on High for 5 minutes, then watch closely as you zap for another 2. Somewhere in the last two the chips will start to crisp up and brown, and it's up to you to get them out. These are amazingly crispy, and full of potatoey goodness. The only problem is, doing them in small batches, you can eat them much quicker than you can cook...


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