Pavlovas with Mixed Berries

Pavlovas with Mixed Berries (A Seat at the Table)

Pavlovas are a type of meringue typically topped with whipped cream and berries.  This meringue-dessert has a crispy-crunchy outer layer and a soft-chewy interior.  It’s almost like a marshmallow on the inside, surrounded by a crisp-outer layer.  Combined with barely-sweetened whipped cream and berries, these are a sweet, creamy treat.

Pavlovas are a bit fussy.  Oven temperatures can vary, so if your pavlovas begin to brown, turn the oven temperature down by 25 degrees.  Also, pavlovas are highly absorbent, so don’t top them until ready to serve or they’ll get soggy from the liquid in the cream and berry sauce.

Pavlovas with Mixed BerriesPavlovas with Mixed Berries (A Seat at the Table)

Makes 18 individual pavlovas

Adapted from Nigella Lawson and Smitten Kitchen

  • 8 egg whites
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp white wine vinegar

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Draw six circles with about 4″ diameters, on three pieces of parchment paper that fit on three baking sheets, pencil side down.

In a small bowl, mix together the sugar and cornstarch.  In a separate small bowl, mix together the vanilla extract and vinegar.

In a large mixer using the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites and salt on low speed until frothy.  Slowly begin adding the sugar-cornstarch mixture while beating the egg whites on medium.  Increase the speed to high and carefully pour in the vanilla extract and vinegar mixture.  Continue mixing until glossy and firm.Pavlovas (A Seat at the Table)

Scoop the meringue onto the circles on the parchment paper.  Spread the meringue to fit into the circles and leave a shallow indentation in the center for the whipped cream to be placed in after baking.

Place pans in the oven and reduce heat to 300°F, bake for 30 minutes, then turn the oven off and let the pan sit in the oven for another 30 minutes.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool on wire racks.

Whipped Cream

  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 2 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

In a large bowl, beat the cream with an electric whisk.  Add the sugar and vanilla and continue whisking until firm peaks form.

Berry Sauce

  • 2 cups thawed frozen berries
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 Tbsp granulated sugar

In a small saucepan, combine ingredients and bring to a boil.  Boil for a few minutes, until the berries break down and the sauce coats the back of a spoon.

To assemble the pavlovas, carefully place the cooled pavlova on a serving plate.  Top with a spoonful of whipped cream and then drizzle with berry sauce.  Top with fresh berries and serve immediately.

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