Swiss Vermicelles

Swiss Vermicelles (Mont Blanc)

One of the easiest Swiss desserts is chestnut puree on crisp meringue topped with whipped cream; it’s also popular in France, where it’s called Mont Blanc (or la torche aux marrons in Alsace). A potato ricer, typically used to crush potato for gnocchi or potato puree, is perfect for making the long thin chestnut vermicelles (literally ‘worms’); if yours has interchangeable plates, use the one with smaller holes. Swiss vermicelles is a great do-ahead dessert as everything can be prepared for a quick last-minute assembly. The best meringues are large fresh ones that are crisp on the outside and slightly sticky on the inside (they’re sometimes enormous, if so you’ll only need a couple). And alongside, why not a little more of the kirsch used to flavour the puree? I love the aged one from Massenez.

Serves 4

Ingredients
  • 440g canned chestnut puree (see below)
  • ¼ cup kirsch
  • ½ cup pure icing sugar
  • 300ml single cream
  • 4 meringues
  • 4 glacé cherries

 

Canned chestnut puree is available from delicatessens and specialty stores.

Method
  1. Combine chestnut puree, kirsch, ⅓ cup of the icing sugar and 2 tablespoons of the cream in a food processor until just smooth. Cover and refrigerate until needed.
  2. Whisk remaining cream and icing sugar together until firm peaks form and refrigerate until needed.
  3. Place meringues in the bottom of serving dishes, crushing them just a little if they’re large.
  4. Squeeze chestnut mixture through a potato ricer to form long strands on top.
  5. Pipe on whipped cream and top with a glace cherry. 

Like this recipe? Check Out My Top 5 Switzerland (country guide)!

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