Pavlova is a not a Mexican dessert, but rather one that originated in New Zealand. This light, airy, crispy and mousse-like-textured treat, is what I made for Valentine’s Day. Though the holiday has passed, I wanted to share the recipe with you because it’s absolutely perfect for any special occasion or even when you’re just craving something sweet. I’m even willing to bet that you always have the ingredients needed right in your kitchen.
Have you ever made pavlova? It’s my first time making it or even attempting a meringue. I have been wanting to for a long time but was intimidated and thought that living in a humid place would assure failure. Boy was I wrong — but the credit goes to my older sister, because she not only urged and encouraged me to make pavlova, she also shared her tips for sucess. My sister is one of the most talented cooks and bakers that I’ve ever met, so having her guidance really helped me feel confident enough to give pavlova a try.
Do make sure to read the entire recipe and instructions before beginning so that you don’t miss anything. But I promise that if even I was able to sucessfully make pavlova, so will you. I used a combination of recipes from a couple of sources because I wanted to make a smaller version just for us, instead of whipping up a large one that we wouldn’t be able to finish. Though the outside colour of the pavlova doesn’t resemble chocolate, the inside does. This pavlova is crispy on the outside and it’s sweet, chocolatey and melts in your mouth. When you reach the center, it’s airy and it both looks and tastes similar to chocolate mousse. Just on it’s own the pavlova is insanly delicous. Then the whipped cream topping helps tone down the sweetness a bit, followed by the fresh burst of strawberry, the flavours dance on your tastebuds for divine taste and texture.
You have to make this pavlova! Now let me share the super easy recipe.
- !Pavlova Ingredients:
- 2 large egg whites
- ⅛ teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice (I used lime)
- 6 tablespoons of moscavado sugar (Pulse in the food processor for a minute to make is a smoother texture)
- ¼ teaspoon of good quality pure vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon of cranberry balsamic vinegar (you can also use raspberry or apple cider or regular white vingear)
- 1 teaspoon of cocoa powder (I used Hershey's powder)
- 1 teaspoon of cornstarch
- !Topping Ingredients:
- whipped cream
- chocolate shavings, optional
- Preheat the oven to 300°F and line a baking sheet with parchement paper.
- You will need either a stand or handheld mixer. Make sure the bowl is very clean and that there isn't any grease on it. Place the lime juice and the egg whites into your mixer's bowl and beat using a medium to high speed just until soft peaks form or when it begins to look fluffy.
- As you continue, add one tablespoon at a time of the sugar and continue to beat until stiff peaks form. After the stiff peaks form grab a little of the meringue with your fingers and rub it between your thumb and index finger to feel for any grainiess that can be left by the sugar. If you can still feel the sugar then you'll need to continue to beat the egg whites. This step is ready when the meringue has a shiny gloss to it.
- Now add the vanilla extract and the balsamic vinegar and continue to beat until well incorporated. Lastly add the cocoa powder and cornstarch and beat for a minute just to incorporate them into the meringue.
- Spoon the mix onto the parchment paper to form either 2 or 4 small circles, or even just one — the circles don't have to be perfect, just try your best. Addiditionally you also can slightly make the centres more shallow so that the whipping cream can be placed easire when topping.
- Place in centre of oven and turn heat down to 250°F and bake for 60 to 70 minutes or until they feel crisp on the outside. Once done, turn the oven off and place a wooden spoon in the door to allow the oven to cool down gradually — leave the pavlova in there for at least 2 hours before serving.
- The pavlova tastes best when eaten the day made, but you can leave it in a cool dry place in a sealed container overnight. Topping the pavlova with the whipped cream should not be done until right before serving. Decorate as desired and serve immideately.
This recipe is adapted from the following sources: http://www.dessertfortwo.com/cranberry-orange-pavlova/ & http://www.joyofbaking.com/PavlovaChocolate.html
Before you go, I’d like to invite you to read a really great review by Masala Herb on my food photography book, Yummy Pics. Thank you!