Our Recipes

Eton Mess image

Eton Mess

Might it be a true story? Was the original Eaton Mess really an accident with a Pavlova or a strawberry meringue pie? Not really, probably, but it is too good a myth to not tell the story while serving this eye-catching delicious desert.

The smooth vanilla cream, the berries and the crunchy meringue make for a feast of textures.

The hardest part in the recipe is making the merengue. Learn from my mistakes!

Below this recipe you will find a few shortcuts, and hyperlinks to recipes from our kitchen heroes.


  • 6 large or 8 medium eggs (always use fresh, free-range eggs); you will only need the whites, so try to combine this desert with a main course in which to use the yokes, such as Hollandaise sauce, or homemade mayonnaise)
  • 300 gr caster sugar (you can do without sugar if using sweetener such as stevia instead, but the texture of the meringue will be very brittle).
  • A pinch of salt.
  • 500 grams of berries; I prefer an assortment of strawberries, blackberries or blueberries and raspberries.
  • A tablespoon of sugar to macerate the berries.
  • A splash of Balsamic vinegar (also to macerate the berries). 
  • A teaspoon of vanilla paste (ditto).
  • A vanilla pod.
  • A tablespoon of icing sugar.
  • 250 ml of zero-fat Greek yoghurt.
  • 250 ml of double cream.
  • 50 grams of dark chocolate.
  • Optional: more dark chocolate (generally 70% cocoa or higher) for decoration.
  • Optional: lemon zest for decoration.
  • Optional: some fine mint leaves.


Baking a meringue takes some practice. Mistakes I have made include not whipping the mixture long enough, not having split the eggs perfectly, whisking in a bowl that was slightly greasy, oven temperatures too high or too low, but once you get these factors straight it your meringue will come out perfectly.

As the oven temperature is important, make sure the temperature indicator of your oven is accurate (for instance by putting an oven thermometer inside).

  1. First, pre-heat your oven to 125° Celsius.
  2. Split the eggs; this recipe only uses the whites so save the yokes for another dish. Put the egg whites into your (very clean) kitchen machine bowl (or mixer bowl).
  3. Whisk at medium speed until stiff peaks form when you withdraw the whisker. A good test: if you can hold the bowl upside down over your head, the whites are stiff enough. Fail the test and you will have learned a valuable lesson. 
  4. Now, add a pinch of salt and gradually add the sugar to the mixture, all the while whisking at high speed. Depending on your equipment, it may take 6 to 8 minutes until the mixture is completely smooth (test by feeling a pinch of the mixture between two fingertips).
  5. Line a large baking tray (or two smaller ones) with greaseproof paper (pro tip: prevent the paper from sliding by gluing them to the tray with a little bit of the mixture).
  6. Divide the mixture in two and spread each half on a piece of greaseproof paper in such a way that the the thickness is about 3 cm (1¼ inch).
  7. Bake for 60-70 minutes in the oven. Make sure you leave the oven door closed for the first 50 minutes. You want the outside to be crispy, the inside slightly sticky. Test with a toothpick. When done, take out of the oven and set aside to cool. An alternative is to bake at 100° degrees for 20 minutes, then turning off the heat and leaving the meringues inside the oven for at least two hours. 
  8. While baking, prepare the berries. Clean and if necessary, halve the larger strawberries. Put the berries into a bowl, add a tablespoon of sugar and a splash of Balsamic vinegar together with the vanilla paste. Stir and put to the side. This process is called maceration and softens the berries.
  9. Make a vanilla cream by whisking together the double cream, seeds from the vanilla pod and the icing sugar. Whisk until you see soft peaks appear when pulling out the whisker. 
  10. Add the Greek yoghurt and carefully fold it into the mixture. 
  11. Gently melt the chocolate. Take one of the meringues and cover with half of the vanilla mixture. Spread the chocolate evenly. Put the second meringue on top and cover this one with the other half of the mixture.
  12. Decorate with the berries on top and on the side. If you want to be cheffy, sprinkle with grated chocolate and some lemon zest, and put some nice (small) mint leaves in the center.

You can make your Eton Mess look pretty, but I prefer mine to look messy, thus enhancing the myth about Eton Mess.

Eton Mess Shortcuts

  • Use some vanilla paste instead of the seeds from a vanilla pods. Pods are hard to get at the time (2020) due to failing harvests in Africa (in Madagascar particularly, which produces some 80% of all vanilla beans). Read this article from The Economist about the shortage.
  • Double cream is a typical ingredient in the United Kingdom kitchen, but less common in other parts of the world. Instead of double cream and zero-fat Greek yoghurt, use single cream and full-fat Greek yoghurt.
  • Skip either the Greek yoghurt or the cream.
  • Skip the chocolate between the two layers.

Eton Mess Cheats

  • Use ready-made meringue cookies, like Nigella Lawson does.
  • Use whipped (single) cream instead of the vanilla mixture. 

Full Eaton Mess recipes