This Pavlova is Summer in a plate. Sweet and juicy blueberries, strawberries and cherries, crispy and chewy meringue, silky and smooth whipping cream melt and blend in a luxurious mouthful.
August is here, it arrived silently, bringing more rain, and few extra pounds. We had some warm sunshiny days, too, so we tried to be involved in the outdoor city summer activities as much as the weather and our time consented. We can say we're tired, but we're happy.
Last few days, especially, were really good, in terms of quality of food intake. We were invited to sample foods at Taste of Edmonton by the Edmonton Journal on Friday, Saturday morning we had our usual breakfast outing with friends in a new café, for dinner we were invited to a BBQ at a couple of friend's house, Sunday we had the regular dinner feast at my in-laws and Monday, since here in Canada was a long weekend, we decided to explore Heritage Days and taste some more great food. For the rest of the week we tried to keep it on the down low, with some exceptions here and there 🙂 .
This Berry Cherry Pavlova was made for our Sunday dinner at Loreto's mom and dad. Nobody complained when we said we were going to bring dessert, so we thought, it's a go.
What brought us to make a Pavlova.
First of all, we had 6 eggs whites that we wanted to utilize. The egg yolks had been used for a recipe we developed for the Italian Center Shop and that will appear later on our blog, some delicious tarts featuring more fruit (we're in summer, after all, and the fruit is colorful, juicy, sweet and just perfect in desserts). Secondly, we had few pounds of blueberries and strawberries just waiting to star in a dish, to which we also added cherries that our dear friend Jim kindly gave us on Saturday. So what better than a bed of crispy exterior meringue, fluffy marshmallow inside and a smooth velvety cloud of whipping cream for the fresh fruit to sit on?
Making a Pavlova was less difficult than I imagined, some crucial steps and few hours of your time, starting from beating the egg whites, fine granulated and icing sugar, with a touch of vanilla, lemon juice and corn starch, until stiff peaks are achieved; then, arranging it on a baking sheet over parchment paper and creating a bowl in the center that will later house the whipped cream and the fruit. Followed by cooking the meringue at low temperature, 250°F, for an hour and a half, and finally letting it rest in the oven, with the door closed, for a couple more hours. When you eventually take it out of the oven, it looks ethereal and so delicate, it actually cracks only by looking at it, just the exterior, though, so crispy and melt in your mouth like sponge toffee, while the inside is gooey like the inside of a marshmallow roasted over a fire.
The whipped cream and the fresh, macerated fruit, just complete this dessert. Unfortunately, we're not showing a picture of the sliced Pavlova, because we had to deliver it whole to our dinner, on the cake stand like you see in the pictures, all wrapped up like an ancient Ming vase, and my hands holding the base of the stand with delicacy and poise on our drive there. Loreto driving carefully dodging potholes and rough spots in the road all for the cause "Pavlova"!
We can say it was well received, at the end of a tasty, hearty, BBQ dinner (again!), among the sounds of lips smacking and spoons grazing the surface of the plate.
Today is my brother's birthday and being 9.500 kms away from each other, I am virtually dedicating this Pavlova to him. He would enjoyed immensely, as well as my parents, being lovers of this type of fruity desserts. My mother is baking for him a pineapple upside down cake with fresh cherries instead of the maraschino ones. Not quite a Pavlova, but a close second ????.
For the song of the day, one of my brother's favorite band, Green Day, with "Holiday". Buon Compleanno Andrea!
Recipe for the Pavlova adapted from "Natasha's Kitchen".Print
- 6 egg whites, room temperature
- 1 cups super fine granulated sugar
- ½ cup icing sugar
- 2 tsp corn starch
- ½ Tbsp lemon juice
- ½ Tbsp vanilla extract
- 1.5 cups cold whipping cream
- 2 Tbsp super fine granulated sugar
- 2-3 cups fresh berries (blueberries, cherries, strawberries)
- 1 tsp limoncello
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- 2-3 small mint leaves
- Preheat the Oven to 250° F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Using the whisk attachment on your stand mixer, beat 6 egg whites and the sugars sugar for 6 to 7 minutes on high speed, or until stiff peaks form. The mixture will be smooth and glossy.
- Add ½ Tbsp lemon juice, ½ Tbsp vanilla extract and 2 tsp corn starch and continue mixing another 15 seconds or until well blended.
- Transfer immediately to a large sheet of parchment paper and use spatula to form a 10" round ring, making a deep indent in the center to accommodate the cream and berries later. The center will rise so make a substantial well in the center.
- Bake at 250° F for 1 hour and 30 minutes. Then turn off the oven and with door closed, let it sit inside the oven for a couple more hours until cooled.
- Remove pavlova from oven and let cool completely to room temp.
- Beat 1½ cups whipping cream with 2 Tbsp sugar on high speed 2-3 minutes or until frosting is stiff. Don't over beat it.
- Just before serving, spread whipped cream over the pavlova and top with macerated berries ans mint leaves. Refrigerate leftovers.
- Serving Size: 10-12 servings
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