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Sift your icing sugar, salt and grounded almond together and leave to the side. Beat your egg whites until soft peaks form and while continuing to beat on high, slowly add your granulated sugar until your egg whites have formed stiff peaks, now add your vanilla and continue to beat on high until the vanilla is incorporated. Sift your sifted dry ingredients (again) into the same bowl you used to beat the egg whites. Use a rubber spantula to mix all the ingredients together by working in big/wide circular movements until the mixture resembles baby porridge (takes about 30-35 circle movements).
Filla piping bag with a round nozzle tip and pipe on a oven tray pre-lined with wax paper. I use a silicone mat for this job but if you don´t have it the wax paper works perfectly well just make sure circles are aprox. 2cm apart and they are all the same size. Leave in a dry room to set for aprox. 2-3 hours or when you touch them they don´t stick to your finger. Pre-heat your oven to 150ºC and bake for 15 minutes. Put your oven off and leave them for a further 5 minutes in the hot oven. You will know if they ready if they have rised and have the famous bottom parts/feet and when you remove them from your baking sheet they come off quite easily. Leave to cool at room temperature and when cool fill with homemade cherry preserve and vanilla buttercream (both recipes below).
Wash and un-pit about 2 cups of cherries, add to a heavy bottom saucepan with ½ cup of white granulated sugar on medium to high heat, stirring continuously. When the liquid has reduced, empty some of it (liquid only) in a cup and add 1 tablespoon of cornstarch, mix well (make sure there are no lumps) then add to the cherry mixture on the stove, reduce the heat and continue to mix until then preserve is nice and thick. Remove from the heat entirely and let cool at room temperature. When cool, you can put it in a jar and let cool overnight in the fridge.
125g of unsalted butter at room temperature
200g of sifted icing sugar
pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla essence/paste
Cream the butter and when soft add the rest of the ingredients and continue to beat until smooth and fluffy. Takes about 3-5 minutes.