Method

Cut three pieces of baking paper and use to line 3 baking trays. Using a pencil, draw around a plate to create a 23cm/9inch diameter circle in the centre of each piece of baking paper. In an electric mixer, whisk the egg whites to stiff peaks. Gradually add the sugar, one tablespoon at a time whilst the whisk is still turning. Finally add in the vanilla essence and corn flour and whisk until well combined. The meringue mixture should now be glossy and resemble shaving foam. Remove the bowl and use a large spoon to fold in ¾ of the chopped hazelnuts. Divide the meringue mixture among the three baking trays, spooning the mixture into the drawn circles and spreading with a spatula to smooth. Place the hazelnut meringues into the oven and bake at 130`c for 1½ hours, switching their positions halfway through cooking. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool. Once cool, carefully peel the paper from the bottom of each meringue. For the filling, whisk the whipping cream, icing sugar and vanilla essence together to soft peaks. Add in the cream cheese and continue to mix to just incorporate. You can now put this dessert together. Place one meringue circle on a cake stand and spread over 1/3 of the filling. Arrange over ½ of the berries and use the back of a spoon to drizzle over 1/3 of the melted chocolate. Repeat this process again. Next, place on top the remaining meringue and spread over the remaining 1/3 of the filling. Sprinkle over the reserved chopped hazelnuts, sift over the extra icing sugar and serve.

Serves 14


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