Craftsy Cakes

During summer, I love to bake light and fresh desserts, especially with fruits, and Pavlova is always on the top of my list. I love to serve it to guests as it looks so beautiful with all the berries on top and tastes delicious. But almost every time I make it for other people, someone asks, ‘what is pavlova?’, so I’ll explain it first. Pavlova is a meringue-based dessert, essentially made from egg whites and sugar and baked on low heat, low and slow. This creates a delicate outer crust and a soft marshmallow interior to the Pavlova, which is absolutely divine.

The ingredients of the Pavlova are so simple, but it requires a lot of attention during baking to get good results. I had my go at the famous Pavlova by Zoe Bakes, and although it’s a wonderful recipe, the shape is more complex because you have to bake it tall, and it may likely crack a lot. So start with the easy and simple flat Pavlova for better results. I will show you how to make it here. Please note that it is still likely that the Pavlova may crack a bit, but not as much as the tall version, and it will still look beautiful.

Here are my top tips for a perfect Pavlova:

  • Clean your mixer bowl and whisk attachment with vinegar or lemon juice to remove any grease from these tools. If there’s any grease stain, your egg whites will not whip up to the amount we need.
  • Separate your egg whites from the yolks in a small bowl before pouring the whites into the mixer bowl to avoid any egg yolks falling into the mixer.
  • Make your Pavlova flat and dome-shaped like a cake to prevent it from collapsing or massive cracks.
  • Preheat the oven to a high temperature, then turn it down. The initial high temperature helps form a beautiful crust and stabilize the meringue.
  • Bake the Pavlova low and slow. When you put it in the oven, turn down the temperature to 110 degrees Celsius.
  • Leave in the oven after baking for as long as possible (until it cools completely), or even overnight. That is to avoid the humidity getting to it and avoiding cracks.
  • Please do not open the oven door as long as the Pavlova is inside, so make sure you plan to bake it and keep it in the oven when you don’t have any other baking.

 

Summer Pavlova With Berries

Crispy exterior and fluffy marshmallow interior, this is a classic Pavlova recipe that you can pair with whipped cream and berries or any of your favorite fruits. Add mangoes, passion fruit, or some lemon curd for added zest.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine australian
Servings 10

Ingredients
  

For the Pavlova

  • 4 egg whites
  • 200 g (1 cup) caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp white vinegar

For the whipped cream

  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

For the toppings

  • Fruits of your choice such as mixed berries.

Instructions
 

For the Pavlova

  • Preheat oven to 150C
  • Separate the whites and yolks individually in a small bowl before pouring each one into your mixer bowl.
  • Use a stand mixer or handheld beater and beat the egg whites until soft peaks form
  • Add the sugar gradually and continue beating for another 3 minutes until thick and glossy. Rub a little of the fluff between your fingers, and there should be no sugar grit - that means it is ready.
  • Add corn starch and vinegar, beat on low for a few seconds until just mixed through.
  • Trace the base of an 8" pan on baking paper (parchment paper), and place it on a baking tray.
  • Place half the meringue onto the paper. Use the circle you traced as a guide to making it round.
  • Scoop out the remaining meringue, and place it on top. Shape into a dome with edges sloping in slightly, and flatten the top.
  • Transfer the baking tray to the oven and immediately turn down the temperature to 100C.
  • Bake for 1 1/2 hours without opening the oven door, ever!
  • Turn the oven off, leave the door closed and leave Pavlova in the oven until it cools completely or overnight.
  • To transfer the Pavlova to a serving dish, use a knife to loosen the edges from the paper, then slide the paper out from underneath it.
  • Just before serving, top with cream and fruit of your choice.

For the whipped cream

  • Mix the whipping cream and sugar in a stand or handheld mixer using the whisk attachment.
  • Beat cream until it is thickened and holds its shape, don't overbeat.
  • Add vanilla extract.
Keyword pavlova, pavlova with berries, summer dessert, summer pavlova

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