I love baking and offered to make something for my friend Simon’s BBQ as he had lots to do including building the BBQ. There were 2 vegetarians and 1 gluten free guest coming. “No problem, I will make my pavlova, a perfect summer dessert that everyone can eat”. My twist on meringue is to use golden caster sugar as it makes a pale golden meringue, a hint of toffee flavour with a slightly soft, melt in the mouth texture. You can substitute for white caster (superfine) sugar for a more traditional white meringue. Heat the oven to 150 degrees Celsius (300 F).
- 4 large egg whites ( at room temperature)
- 225g (8oz) golden caster (superfine) sugar
- 2 level teaspoons cornflour (cornstarch)
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Mix the sugar and cornflour in a bowl
- Put the egg whites and cream of tartar into a large mixing bowl
- Whisk until the mixture forms in stiff glossy peaks
- Start adding the sugar/cornflour mixture a tablespoon at a time whisking each time until added
- Whisk in the vanilla, the meringue will be firm and glossy
6. Line 2 flat baking trays with baking paper, I use a tiny dab of meringue mixture at each corner to hold paper in place
7. Spoon the meringue into 2 round discs about 20 cm (8 inch) diameter
I got a bit fancy and piped meringue for the top disc.
8. Turn the oven down to 140 C (275 F) and bake for 45- 60 minutes, swap the baking sheets half way through to get an even bake if on 2 shelves in the oven. They are ready when the top feels firm and the meringue comes away from the baking paper when a spatula is slipped underneath.
3 medium peaches sliced, small punnet strawberries washed
3 passionfruit, halved and insides removed
275 ml (10 fl oz) double (heavy) cream
Whisk the cream, add 2 passionfruit. Spread a layer on the bottom meringue and sandwich the top meringue. Spread the remaining cream on the top. Add sliced peaches,strawberries and remaining passionfruit. Simon’s BBQ crew approved and the pavlova was a hit, gluten free and delicious.
A Kiwi dessert with no kiwifruit but I hope Anna (Pavlova) would be proud.