Yield: 8 to 10 servings
- 7 egg whites
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 3/4 cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 cup whipping cream
- 1/3 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup sifted powdered sugar
- 1 pint fresh strawberries, washed, hulled, and halved
- Preheat oven to 500°.
- Combine egg whites (at room temperature), cream of tartar, and salt in a large mixing bowl; beat until foamy. Gradually add sugar, 2 tablespoons at a time, beating well after each addition. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla and almond extract; beat until stiff peaks form and sugar dissolves. (Do not under beat mixture. )
- Cover a baking sheet with unglazed brown paper. (Do not use recycled paper. ) Make 25 individual meringue kisses by dropping meringue mixture by teaspoonfuls onto brown paper.
- Butter the bottom of a 9-inch Spring form pan. Spread remaining meringue mixture evenly over bottom of pan. Place baking sheet on bottom rack of oven and Spring form pan on top rack. Turn oven off. Allow meringue to cook and cool in oven overnight. (Do not open oven door.) Carefully remove meringue kisses from brown paper; set aside. Loosen edge of torte with a sharp knife, and remove outer rim from Spring form pan. Transfer torte to a serving platter.
- Beat whipping cream until foamy; add 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and powdered sugar, beating until soft peaks form.
- Spread sweetened whipped cream over baked meringue layer. Place strawberry halves on whipped cream, and arrange meringue kisses over top. Chill. Slice into wedges, and serve on individual dessert plates.
- Note: Baked meringue may be stored in an airtight container, and assembled the next day.
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