Brazo de Mercedes is a traditional Filipino dessert consisting of a custard filled meringue roll. The name literally translates to “arm of Mercedes”. The origin of the dessert is unclear although the name indicates it stems from the era of Spanish colonization. I have to admit I find the name a little baffling. Why would someone name a dessert after a woman’s arm? At any rate it is a delicious dessert and one of my favorites. It’s also pretty straightforward to make. The difficulty is in applying the will power to stop eating it after one serve (well, okay…maybe after two)
10 large eggs, separated
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 C caster sugar
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
2 C condensed milk
1 tsp white vinegar
1/3 C powdered sugar
- Preheat the oven to 175 degrees celsius.
- Combine the egg whites and cream of tartar then beat with an electric mixer until soft peaks form.
- Gradually add the caster sugar then vinegar. Continue beating to a stiff peak.
- Place baking paper on top a cookie sheet and lightly grease the surface.
- Pour the meringue mixture onto the baking paper and even out the surface using a spatula.
- Bake for about 20 minutes until the meringue turns a light brown color.
- Combine the egg yolks, condensed milk and vanilla in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook the mixture, stirring continuously until it thickens.
- Remove from the heat and allow it to cool slightly.
- Remove the meringue from the oven and allow it to cool for a few minutes.
- Sprinkle powdered sugar over the meringue and place wax paper over it. Turn it out onto a similarly sized tray and slowly peel off the baking paper.
- Pour the cooled custard over the meringue and spread it evenly over the surface.
- Carefully roll the meringue using the wax paper.
- Transfer the finished roll onto a serving platter and enjoy!