Many of my favorite chefs have concocted variations of the Eton mess, a traditional English desert comprised of meringue, whipped cream, and summer fruit of their choosing, each adding their own spin on the dish. Apparently, the Eton mess originated in the tuck shop of Eton, the famed boarding school that calls Prince William, Benedict Cumberbatch, and Damian Lewis, alums. Maybe it’s the pupils’ breeding, or maybe just the Eton mess to which we can attribute their success. Oddly enough, I decided to test out New Yorker Ina Garten’s version that, although containing framboise liquor, is subtle in comparison to Jamie Oliver‘s with its pears, chocolate, and caramel drizzle, or Sophie Dahl‘s rosewater-infused concoction. An Eton mess can easily be whipped up (quite literally) in a short time frame, although be sure to set aside an extra hour if you plan to make your own meringue. Where are your meringues, Brooklyn?!?! Instructions are below the pictures-enjoy!!
- 4 (6-ounce) packages fresh raspberries
- 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon framboise liqueur
- 1 2/3 cups cold heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 4 (3-inch) bakery meringue shells, broken in pieces
1. Pour two packages of the raspberries, 1 cup of sugar, and the lemon juice into a 10-inch sauté pan. Crush the berries lightly with a fork and bring the mixture to a full boil over medium-high heat. Lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is syrupy. Fold the remaining two packages of raspberries and the framboise into the hot mixture and refrigerate until very cold.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the cream, the remaining 3 tablespoons of sugar, and the vanilla together on medium-high speed until it forms firm peaks.
2. In decorative glasses, layer a spoonful of the whipped cream, a spoonful of the raspberry mixture, and then a few meringue pieces.
3. Repeat once or twice, depending on the size of the glasses, until the glasses are full, ending with berries and a dollop of cream.