This dessert was named after Anna Pavlova who was a Russian ballerina of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. It is my all time favourite dessert. It is light and delicious. I can always fit in a piece of Pavlova no matter how much I’ve eaten. I like it any time of year but with the fresh summer fruits, you can’t beat it.
The classic is with strawberries on it but it can take absolutely any fruit. One of my favourites is passion fruit. Raspberry is another classic. You can use a single fruit or mixed fruit but it must be fresh fruit. Pineapple, Kiwi Fruit, any berries and I’ve even seen bananas on it. (But that would need a caramel drizzle, oh so good!)
3 egg whites
6 oz. caster sugar
½ t. vanilla essence
½ t. vinegar
1 level t. cornflour
10 oz. double cream (heavy cream USA)
DRAW a 7-inch circle on greaseproof paper or baking parchment.
PLACE the paper on a baking sheet.
BEAT the egg whites until very stiff.
BEAT in the sugar gradually.
BEAT in the vanilla, vinegar and cornflour.
SPREAD the meringue on the circle on the paper.
I make a gradual dip towards the centre so fruit fits nicely.
BAKE at 300F, 150 C, Gas mark 2 for about an hour until firm.
It should not be brown but creamy.
LEAVE until completely cool.
REMOVE the paper carefully.
PUT the meringue on a plate.
PILE with the whipped cream.
ARRANGE strawberry halves or quarters attractively on top.
Just for your info the vinegar makes it soft in the middle, sort of marshmallowy. Without the vinegar, it would be called a Meringue, which is crisp all the way through, not a Pavlova.