He was an eggs-tra.
I don’t know how it happened, but one day in New Zealand my flatmates found out I had never had pavlova, and they about died. It was described to me, I was assured that it was a NEW ZEALAND dish, no matter what those Australians say, and that it is always eaten with fresh whipped cream, kiwi, and shaved chocolate.
Then they proceeded to make one. It was all precision and measurement. Room temperature egg whites, making sure no one touched the oven for at least 12 hours after it was done cooking, so it could cool overnight, a hint of vanilla, white vinegar ONLY.
By the time we actually ate it, I was pretty much convinced that I would never be able to make it myself.
Then I had it out at restaurants….and holy moly. That’s just a whole different pavlova game.
When I came home, I really wanted pavlova, so I decided to make it for my friends and family for Christmas Eve. I was really nervous and worried. I got Claire and Amy’s recipe and whipped one up. I found out of season in the US kiwis and made my own cream and everything.
And it came out beautifully. Now I am a convert, and tell everyone they need to eat it and try to make it for every occasion I can.
One of my dear friends passed the Bar and was recently sworn in to be an official lawyer, so we threw her a party to celebrate. I made mini pavlovas. I hadn’t made these for this group of friends yet. While there was some reservation within the group about trying it, they all did…and I think they were all well satisfied.
This recipe is Claire and Amy’s recipe, but tweaked a bit, since I can’t leave well-enough alone, and because I like to see how far I can push things to make them easier and still delicious. It is less fussy, you don’t have to wait as long for the oven to cool, and it comes out all caramelly and wonderful.
Claire and Amy’s Pavlova
Ingredients5 large egg whites
1 pinch of salt
1 c caster sugar (super fine sugar, regular sugar works too)
2 teaspoons cornflour (corn starch)
1 scant teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoons white wine vinegar
750 ml whipping cream (whipped)
2-3 ripe kiwi
good quality chocolate for shaving over the top
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
- Whisk the egg whites with the salt until they’re holding firm peaks but are not stiff. Gently add in the sugar, spoonful after spoonful, still beating, until you’ve got a bowl full of gleaming, satiny, snowy meringue. Sprinkle the cornflour, a few drops of vanilla and the vinegar on top and fold in to combine.
- Spoon the meringue onto the baking parchment into delineated circles, and spread and smooth to fill. You want to make the meringue slightly higher at the rims, or just use the back of the spoon to make an indentation in the center to hold the cream and fruit later. There should be about 6 mini meringues per baking sheet.
- Put into the oven, turn it down to 300ºF, and bake for 30 minutes. Turn the oven off and leave them in for another 30 minutes, then take out of the oven to cool. I just transfer them, on their baking parchment, to wire racks.
- When you want to assemble them, dollop cream into the indentation, and smooth it with the back of a spoon, leaving the odd peak. Place, one by one, sliced pieces of kiwi so that they look well filled but not crammed. Sprinkle with chocolate shavings.