Gram's Boccone Dolce

Meringue layer:

4 egg whites

Pinch of salt

1/2 tsp cream of tartar

1 c sugar

3/4 c chopped hazelnuts or slivered almonds


Filling:

6 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

3 T water

4 cups heavy cream

1/2 c sugar

1 1/2 pints fresh strawberries, sliced


Preheat oven to 250. Meringue: Beat egg whites, salt and cream of tartar until stiff. Gradually beat in sugar and continue to beat until meringue is stiff and glossy. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and on the paper trace 3 eight in circles. Spread meringue evenly over circles, about 1/4 inch thick. Sprinkle each meringue circle with nuts, approx 1/4 cup on each circle. Bake 45 minutes to 1 hour, until meringue is pale gold (ours didn't get gold at all) but still pliable. Remove from oven and carefully slide to cake rack to cool completely.

Melt chocolate chips and water in your preferred chocolate chip melting method; microwave, stove top, double boiler, etc, stirring until smooth. Whip the cream until stiff, gradually add the sugar to the cream, beat until very stiff.

Place a meringue layer on a serving plate, spread with a thin coat of melted chocolate, then a layer (about 3/4 inch thick) of whipped cream, top with sliced strawberries. Repeat layers three times, on last layer, frost entire cake with whipped cream, decorate with strawberries and extra whipped cream as desired. Refrigerate for 2 hours (very important to ensure that cake will cut well and not leave you with a gloppy mess!), and serve! Serves 8-10 very, very happy people. :)


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