I think I finally figured out how to get James to eat some fruit.
Seriously — this is it. Those kiwis? He bought those about three weeks ago. I’m shocked — shocked — that they’re still intact (and tasty). And the strawberries? Leftovers from a cart I bought at TJ’s a whole two days ago. Why I still buy fruit at TJ’s is beyond me — I swear every “fresh” thing that comes from that store goes bad within a few days. But the ones we did manage to salvage were tasty, especially after I glazed them with some passionfruit pulp in syrup that James brought all the way back from Perth.
So, this is definitely my first pavlova. You can tell because I somehow wasn’t concerned about the fact that the recipe didn’t seem to indicate whether the pan should have a shape of some sort. Just pour it on a sheet pan and go, right? Um… NO. Not unless you like the smell of burning sugar.
Despite the mishap, though, it turned out pretty well. Mostly, it just didn’t have the body I was hoping for. (Kidding! I’m trying to see the bright side of all the footy going on in our house right now … Cut me some slack?) Ok, seriously, though — use a cake tin lined with parchment paper, so you’ll have a pretty cake-like thing to decorate. Just don’t forget the parchment; you need to flip it upside down to decorate it, and the underside will be spongy, a bit sticky, and almost marshmallow-like:
Not to mention delicious. And after you’re finished devouring this (decorations and all), you’ll have the energy to make the whole wheat challah I’m working on as I type. Stay tuned? In the meantime, counteract this dessert with Rachael’s awesome bran muffin recipe. Here’s my version, with chunks of marzipan and dried cherries in place of bananas:
This recipe was adapted from The Cook and the Chef (which is a fun show, if you haven’t heard of it — Simon and Maggie are so cute together). I cut down the sugar and made a few other small modifications based on Cooking: A commonsense guide‘s Grandma’s Pavlova recipe. Finally, I skipped the whipped cream. You know, I didn’t miss it.
You’ll want a mixer for this recipe, or some serious muscles.
- 4 egg whites (reserve the 4 egg yolks for challah — recipe forthcoming)
- 1 c. granulated sugar
- pinch salt
- 1 t. white corn flour
- 1 t. distilled white vinegar
- 1 t. vanilla extract
- 4 strawberries, sliced
- 6 kiwis, sliced
- passion fruit pulp in syrup, or fresh passion fruit mixed in whipped cream (it’s tart without some sugar)
Preheat the oven to 315°F. Line a 9″ springform pan with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, beat the whites and salt until they form stiff peaks. Add the sugar slowly, beating it in gradually. When the sugar has been added, keep beating the whites until they start to look glossy and smooth and the sugar has completely dissolved.
Fold in the remaining ingredients gently. Pour into your lined pan, and place in the oven. Bake for ~1 hour, or until the surface is light brown and crisp to the touch. It should be firm, not squishy. Baking time will vary depending on how thick your pavlova is, so keep an eye on it.
Remove from oven, and let cool for a few minutes. Flip out of the pan onto a plate, gently, and peel off the parchment. Decorate with fruit and / or whipped cream as you wish. I definitely recommend the strawberry / kiwi / passion fruit combination, but the best part about this dessert is it’s a perfect way to show off beautiful summer fruit.