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Oeufs à la Neige in Peach Sauce

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Peach Sauce:
3/4 cup nonfat plain yogurt
3/4 cup sliced canned peaches in syrup
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons Cointreau or Grand Marnier
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Snow Eggs:
6 cups water
3 large egg whites
1/4 cup sugar

3 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon water

Angel Hair (Alternative Topping):
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
2 teaspoons grated edible wax, such as beeswax


For the Peach Sauce:

  • Place the yogurt, peaches (with syrup), 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar, Cointreau, and vanilla in a blender or food processor, and process until smooth and foamy. If desired, strain the peach sauce through a fine-mesh strainer set over a bowl.

For the Snow Eggs:

  • Bring the water to a boil in a large pot. Meanwhile, beat the egg whites in a mixer until they are firm (3 to 4 minutes). Add the 1/4 cup sugar, and continue beating the whites at medium to high speed for 30 seconds. At this point, reduce the heat of the water so that it is no more than 180º (just under the simmer / boil).
  • Using a ladle or large spoon, scoop out four mounds or meringue one at a time, and, using another spoon, slide them into the hot (not boiling) water. Poach the egg white mounds for about 2 1/2 minutes, then use a skimmer to gently turn them over, and cook for another 2 1/2 minutes. Lift them carefully from the water, and drain them on paper towels.

For the Caramel:

  • Not more than 3 hours before serving the snow eggs, place the 3 tablespoons of sugar and 1 tablespoon of water in a small, unlined copper or stainless steel saucepan. Mix just enough to combine them, then bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium, and continue boiling the mixture for about 3 minutes, until it thickens into a syrup and turns a rich caramel color, taking care that it doesn’t burn.
  • While the caramel is cooking, pour the peach sauce into a serving dish or shallow glass bowl, and arrange the snow eggs on top in one layer. Remove the caramel from the stove, and immediately pour it directly on top of the “eggs, dividing it equally among them. Serve, preferably within an hour.

For the Angel Hair (Alternative Topping):

  • Combine the sugar and water in a small saucepan, bring to a boil over medium heat, and cook until light ivory in color (about 335º). Remove from the heat, and stir in the wax.
  • Cover the floor surrounding your work table with newspapers, and secure a long-handled spatula or wooden spoon so that the entire handle extends beyond the edge of the table.
  • When the syrup has cooled for a few minutes, hold two forks side by side in one hand (or use a small whisk with the wires clipped off where they begin to curve), and dip the tines into the pan. Lift some syrup, and wave the forks high over the spatula so that the dripping threads solidify in the air before falling over the extended handle.
  • Slide the collected strands off the handle, and use immediately to garnish the 'eggs' or store in an airtight container.

Serves 4

Recipe Courtesy of Jacques Pépin's Table, KQED Books & Tapes, 1995 -
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