Pavlova is a sweet meringue cake that has a light and delicately crisp outside crust with a soft marshmallow center. This dessert is normally served with whipped cream and fresh fruit. For this recipe, instead of making one large round of meringue, we are making individual Pavlovas. Perfect to serve at your next dinner party or backyard barbecue.
A few notes on making a Pavlova. First, a Pavlova is a meringue, a beaten mixture of egg whites and sugar. It is important for the egg whites to reach maximum volume, so make sure your mixing bowl and whisk are clean and free of grease. The eggs need to be separated and it is easier to do this while the eggs are still cold. Once separated, cover the egg whites and let them come to room temperature before using (about 30 to 60 minutes). I like to use superfine sugar (castor) as it dissolves faster into the egg whites than granulated white sugar. You can make your own superfine sugar by processing granulated white sugar in your food processor until very fine, about 60 seconds. This meringue is a little different in that cornstarch and vinegar are folded into the beaten meringue. Adding these two ingredients will help give the Pavlova a crust that is dry and crisp, with a soft marshmallow-like interior.
The Pavlova can be made a day or two in advance of serving, if it is stored in a cool dry place, in an airtight container. A Pavlova is usually served with softly whipped cream and fresh fruit. Because of the sweetness of the meringue I like to use tart flavored fruits. Passion fruit, kiwi, blackberries, blueberries, and raspberries are some of my personal favorites. Try to place the whipped cream and fruit on the meringue shortly before serving as the meringue will immediately start to soften and break down from the moisture of the whipped cream and fruit.
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Article and Demonstration by Stephanie Jaworski
Photo and Videography by Rick Jaworski
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