Four years ago, we visited family in Australia where I had my first taste of this delicate dessert: Pavlova. It is a meringue-based dessert with a crisp outer shell and gooey, marshmallow-like on the inside. They say that the dessert was created in honor of a ballet dancer Pavlova, hence the name, during her dance tour in Australia and New Zealand.
The recipe is different from the regular meringue recipe in that it uses cornflour which causes the center to be gooey. It is also baked for a long time, 90 minutes, and cooled in the oven. The recipes in the internet are basically the same. I used this one by Catty.
PAVLOVA (adapted from The Catty Life)
- 4 large egg whites
- 1 cup caster sugar
- 1 teaspoon vinegar
- 1/2 tablespoon corn flour
- 300-500 mL whipping cream
- 1 1/2 cup strawberries
- 1 cup blueberries
- 1 piece kiwi
- 1 mango (pureed or diced)
Pre-heat oven to 120°C/250°F.
On a sheet of parchment/baking paper, draw an 8″ diameter circle. Turn over, or place another sheet on top but make sure you can still see the circle.
Separate egg whites from the yolk and place in a clean large mixing bowl. Beat at a medium to high speed until soft peaks form.
Gradually add in the sugar while still beating and continue to beat until stiff peaks form. Your mixture should now be a smooth meringue.
Sprinkle vinegar and corn flour over the mixture and fold in with a spatula.
Using a spatula, spoon the mixture onto the prepared baking tray and baking paper keeping the meringue inside the circle. Smooth over and try to make the outside edges slightly higher than the inside edges.
Bake meringue in oven on a middle shelf for 90 minutes. After 90 minutes, turn off the oven, leave the oven door slightly open and leave pavlova to cool for 2 hours or over night if possible.
When ready to serve, beat the whipping cream in a large bowl until it becomes firm enough so that it can hold itself up. Spread across the top of the pavlova.
Wash and prepare strawberries, blueberries and kiwi. I wanted to use passion fruit but since we don’t have any, I pureed a mango and drizzled it on top.
It was yummy!!