Meringue Heart Cookies

With three girly-girls in the house, we love making treats for Valentines Day! These meringue cookies are delicious, low in fat, and will last for 6 weeks if stored in a cool, dry place...I think I'm in love!:)I had made up several treats for an event, and these are the ones the girls kept asking to snack on. I was surprised since they even passed up Rice Krispy treats for these! Definitely thumbs up from the Gourmet Girls.
Meltaway Meringue Heart Cookies (makes 24-30)
3 large egg whites
1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 c. C & H white sugar
red food coloring
crushed candy canes (about 1/4 c.)
Melted chocolate (your favorite kind)
Parchment paper or Silpat mat

Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Whip egg whites, cream of tartar, and salt in mixer until soft peaks form. Slowly add sugar and a few drops red food coloring. Beat until stiff peaks form and mixture is smooth and glossy (about 5 minutes).
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or Silpat mat. Put mixture in a pastry bag or gallon ziploc bag with a corner snipped off. Pipe out thick hearts (to make them thicker I ended up drawing one heart then another one on top of it) onto your cookie sheet and sprinkle with crushed candy canes. Bake at 200 degrees for 1 1/2 hours. Then, turn off oven and leave meringues in the oven to completely cool (overnight is best). Next, melt your favorite chocolate (I used Peters Burgundy) and dip the bottoms of your cookies. Set on wax paper to dry. When completely set, remove from wax paper and serve! You can also store them in an airtight container for up to 6 weeks.

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