Inspired by the lightness of the famous ballerina, Anna Pavlova, Pavlova is a meringue dessert with a crispy, crunchy shell that is soft and moist on the inside. Topped with a refreshing whipped cream and sweet apricots, this recipe makes the perfect dessert for a dinner alfresco on a warm summer night. There’s not really anything too fancy about elegant dessert as you probably have already all the ingredients to make the meringue base.
Ingredients list for the apricot pavlovas
Prepping time: 20 min
Cooking time : 1 hour
Serves: 4 large pavlovas or 6 smaller
For the meringue:
- 4 egg whites, at room temperature
- 1 pinch of salt
- 1 1/2 cups icing sugar
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons white vinegar
For the filling:
- 4/5 cup (20cl) heavy cream
- 1/4 cup (30g) icing sugar
- 1 handful of fresh blanched pistachios, coarsely chopped
1. Preheat your oven to 300°F (150ºC). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
2. In a large bowl, beat egg whites with salt until glossy peaks form. With the mixer still running, add sugar in three additions, beating until meringue is stiff and glossy. Add the vinegar and cornstarch, fold gently for a smooth and shiny meringue.
3. Scoop the meringue over the baking sheet, forming small nests about 4 inches in diameter, well spaced from each others. To make sure your pavlovas are regular in size, draw a guide on the parchment paper and turn the sheet upside down.
4. Transfer the baking sheet to oven and immediately reduce the temperature to 250°F (120°C) and bake for 1 hour. Turn off the oven and let meringues cool completely in oven.
The whipped cream
1. Refrigerate the cream for at least 1h. Put a stainless steel bowl and the whisks of your mixer in the freezer. Pour the cold cream into the bowl and beat until stiff. Whipped cream is ready when it make “peaks” that hold when you lift the mixer. Sprinkle sugar, spoon by spoon, beat on medium speed. Keep the cream in the refrigerator until you assemble the dessert.
2. Place 2 tablespoons of whipped cream over each pavlova. Top with quartered apricots and sprinkle with pistachios. Serve immediately.
(Picture by Miss Crumble)