Try this strawberry, white chocolate and elderflower twist on an Eton mess, then check out our classic eton mess, eton mess cheesecake and vegan eton mess. Also discover more simple summer desserts such as our summer pudding.

This recipe uses frozen strawberries but you can use fresh when they are in season. As well as making your own elderflower cordial, if you like.


  • 3 egg whites
  • 175g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp cornflour
  • 1 tsp white wine vinegar


  • 500g frozen strawberries
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 2 tbsp elderflower cordial


  • 100g white chocolate, chopped
  • 1 tbsp freeze-dried strawberries


  • 300ml double cream
  • 2 tbsp elderflower cordial
  • ½ tbsp icing sugar


  • STEP 1

    Heat the oven to 150C/fan 130C/gas 2 and line your largest baking sheet with baking paper. Pour the egg whites into a large, clean bowl and use electric beaters to whisk to stiff, frothy peaks. Add the sugar, a spoonful at a time, whisking well between each addition. Continue this until the sugar is used up, then continue whisking until you have a thick, shiny meringue that holds stiff peaks. Add the cornflour, vinegar and a pinch of salt, and whisk again.

  • STEP 2

    Spoon four 9cm rounds onto the baking sheet, leaving large gaps in between, then with the remaining meringue mixture use a teaspoon to spoon small blobs, ovals, tears, strips or any other shape you like onto the baking tray.

  • STEP 3

    Put the tray into the oven and immediately turn the temperature down to 140C/fan 120C/gas 1 and cook for 1 hour-1 hour 15 minutes or until the meringues come away from the paper easily, then turn off the oven and leave to cool in the oven for 30 minutes, before moving to wire racks to cool completely.

  • STEP 4

    Make the compote by tipping the strawberries into a pan along with the sugar and cordial. Bubble away until the strawberries have mostly broken down to form a syrup – you want to keep some bits of strawberries in there. Turn off the heat, leave to cool, then chill.

  • STEP 5

    Put the white chocolate in a heatproof bowl and melt in short blasts in the microwave, then pour onto a baking tray lined with baking paper. Use a pallet knife to spread out to a thin, even layer, then sprinkle over the freeze-dried strawberry pieces. Chill until needed.

  • STEP 6

    Whisk together the cream, elderflower cordial and sugar until it holds soft peaks.

  • STEP 7

    Gently break up some of the meringues into large pieces and dot some of them onto a large serving platter. Spoon over some of the cream and some of the compote, then repeat, building up the layers. Continue until you’ve used all of the cream and meringues, using the small ones you made to top. Break the white chocolate bark into shards and scatter over the top.

  • STEP 8

    Serve with a large spoon for serving and more of the strawberry compote to serve.

Get more inspiration from our summer dessert recipes

A white cheesecake topped with red strawberries and whole strawberries on a white plate


Anna Glover profile
Anna GloverSenior food editor

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