Everyone who is from Russia knows about this light and very delicious dessert. You can find Zephyr in Russian stores and markets here in US, but I always had a bad luck with some Russian stores selling it here because it was not as fresh and tasty as this dessert has a very short shelf life. I was looking for a good recipe to try to make Zephyr at home and most recipes that I found are using jell-o products as a substitute for real fruits and berries. Finally I found a great website, where is Zephyr was made out of real apple puree and decided to give it a try and make it at home. It taste just like the Zephyr I used to buy when I was in Russia! The process of making Zephyr is time consuming and can be found difficult but result really worth the efforts.
For about 50 Zephyrs you will need:
• 250 grams apple pure about 4 Granny Smith apples (I used Fiji and it came out a little too sweet)
• 1 egg white
• 150 grams water
• 400 grams sugar
• 8 grams agar-agar (can find in any organic store, I found it in Whole Foods)
• 2-3 tablespoons powdered sugar for dusting
• thermometer for making hard candies
• pastry bag with star tip I used Wilton tip 1M
Remove the core from your apples and place them onto baking dish with a small amount of water in it, you can sprinkle them with sugar and cinnamon if desire. Bake the apples at 350F until they get soft in the middle, about 35-40 minutes. Let them completely cool down and then using spoon scoop the middle part out and blend it in the blander until it gets smooth.
Beat egg white with the mixer and then gradually add apple pure and continue beating until this batter increases in size and become fluffy.
At the same time mix 50 grams of sugar with agar-agar keep it near you, in the pot heat water with 350 grams of sugar, set the thermometer on the side of the pot, and watch until it reaches 176F then slowly pour sugar and agar mixed together and whisk it constantly until fully incorporated.
Continue cooking and whisking the syrup until temperature reaches 230F.
Slowly pour hot syrup into beaten egg white and apple puree and continue to beat on high, the mixture will increase in size significantly just continue beating until it forms a hard picks.
Transfer this mixture into the pastry bag and pipe roses into baking sheets covered with parchment paper and let Zephyr dry for about 24 hours. It will be ready to use when dry completely. Dust each Zephyr with powdered sugar and glue together. Keep it in airtight container in refrigerator.
P.S. Some people might think raw egg whites are not safe to eat. The egg whites in this recipe are no longer raw after you add the Boiling Syrup.