Hertzog cookies are just the best little tarts, everyone loves them. They are an apricot version of lemon meringue pie with a hint of coconut. these days you can buy frozen pastry which makes them so easy to make, you can have a dozen hertzoggies straight from the oven in about 1/2 an hour.

What you need

1 packet frozen short crust pastry

1 bottle/tin smooth apricot jam
2 egg whites
100g caster sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence
4 tablespoons desiccated coconut

The process

heat your oven to 180 Celsius and spray your tart tray with spray and cook. Use a shallow tray not a muffin tray.

Flour a surface and your rolling pin lightly and roll out the pastry to about 3/4mm thick. Use a glass or round cutter to cut rounds to line the tray. use a fork to prick holes in the base and then put the tray into the oven for about 10 minutes or so until the bases are lightly browned.

You will be smelling that home baking smell and wondering why it has taken you so long to discover frozen pastry!

Remove the tray from the oven and allow them to cook in the tray while you make the meringue mixture.

Best the egg whites to stiff peaks and then add the caster sugar in 3 lots, beating well each time. Then add the vanilla essence and give it a last good beating. It should be glossy now. finally add the coconut and use a spoon or spatula to fold in the coconut, don’t beat it!

Fill each pastry case with the apricot jam to about 2/3 full and then place a nice dollop of the meringue mixture on top.

Pop the tray back into the oven for about 20 minutes until the meringue is crisp and slightly browned.

If you can… let them cool for a while before eating, the jam burns like hell and it allows the meringue to crisp up.