My all time favourite dessert!! I remember my cousin made this at my grandmother’s place many, many moons ago and I fell in love! I think I was 11 years old and I asked mum if we could make this. Well… the first attempt failed and I ended up with a flat disc. Mum had an idea to keep baking this thing and turned it into ‘failed pavlova biscuits’. Actually really yummy! I realised the error I’d made… the recipe asks to fold in corn starch and I may have added self-raising flour instead. Needless to say, I never made that mistake again.
6 eggs, separated
1 1/4 cups caster sugar
2 tsp cornflour/cornstarch
1 tsp white vinegar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
300 ml thickened cream
Fruit of your choice
Preheat oven to 120°C. Line a baking tray with baking paper. (I cheat and use a dinner plate to mark out my circle). Place a dinner plate in the middle of your baking tray and gently dust the edge with corn starch. Life the plate. You will be left with a nice circle which I find helps me mould my pavlova shape (that is, I actually end up with a circle!). Dust the circle with more corn starch, then shake off any excess.
Use an electric mixer to whisk egg whites in a clean dry bowl until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition, until meringue is thick and glossy and sugar dissolved. Rub a little meringue between fingers. If still “gritty” with sugar, continue to whisk until sugar dissolves. Add cornflour, vinegar and vanilla and whisk until combined. Spoon meringue onto the baking paper, using the marked circle as a guide. Smooth sides and top of pavlova. Use a small spatula to forms little peaks around edge of pavlova. Bake in oven for 1 1/2 hours or until pavlova is dry to the touch. Turn off oven. Leave pavlova in oven with the door ajar to cool completely. When completely cold, transfer to serving plate or store in an airtight container until required.
Use an electric mixer to whisk the cream in a medium bowl until firm peaks form. Spoon cream onto the top of pavlova and decorate with fresh fruit.
You can colour the meringue with food colouring and create a pavlova stack.
Just add a couple drops of food colouring along with the corn starch, vinegar and vanilla.
Make another pavlova batch. Double the goodness!!