Pavlova is super simple to make.! Just beat up some egg whites & a few ingredients. slow bake in the oven then top with whipped cream & fruit! Pavlova makes a very impressive dessert & it is really delicious!
The Pavlova I just made cracked after it was baked, so I looked on the internet for reasons why. I had taken mine right out of the oven & onto a wire rack… which was my error. It has to cool slowly & gently, the oven is turned off & the Pavlova is left in the hot oven to cool for an hour. Otherwise, like mine, the meringue cools too quickly … falls & cracks. But …Pavlova is very forgiving as is the people who are going to eat it!! Just pile whipped cream on top, cover with berries & the cracks don’t matter!!! One tricky thing about meringue is that if it is cooked too long it gets brown & crumbly….if it isn’t cooked long enough, the egg white is gooey. If your oven temperature is accurate, then just go with the time given in this recipe. Otherwise, you can check for doneness by seeing if the outside is dry & the inside is still soft. The original recipe calls for chopped chocolate to be added but I rarely add the chocolate.
This recipe is from Canadian Living Magazine from many years ago, I just have a photocopy of it.. The original recipe is for a Chocolate Pavlova ……Chocolate Pavlova By The Canadian Living Test Kitchen. My notes on the page are … Easy & good with a huge check mark! This is my one & only recipe for Pavlova…but I am not adverse to trying others!!
Here is the recipe ( these are the ingredients I used, everything is the same as the original recipe except for the chocolate, which I did not add, & the amount of whipping cream. I just buy the 2 cup size of whipping cream rather than a big one & have left over…& I think this is enough cream!)
4 egg whites
1 cup sugar
1 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp vinegar
1 tsp vanilla
(If you want to add the chocolate : 1/4 cup chopped chocolate)
2 cups of whipping cream
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Use an 8 inch cake pan & trace the base on the parchment paper, I use a black sharpie, turn the paper over. If you cake pan is bigger…just know that when you are forming the shape of your Pavlov. If you make your Pavlova too big, the base will be thin & will not hold the whipped cream & it will fall apart when you are transfering it from the baking sheet to the serving dish
- Using the whisk attachment on your mix master, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form
- Beat in the sugar gradually, adding a couple spoonfuls at a time, until glossy peaks form, scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula
- Beat in the cornstarch, vinegar & vanilla until mixed in, but not too long, ***scrape down the sides of the bowl
- If you are adding the chocolate, fold it in now
- Put the egg whites onto the lined baking sheet using the circle you drew as your guide. Using your spatula, spread the beaten whites out to the shape of the circle.
- Use the back of a spoon & indent the centre & form into a 5 inch circle, making sure the sides are 1 inch higher than the centre.
- Bake in a 275f oven until the outside is crisp, approx 1 hour. Turn the oven off & leave the Pavlova in the hot oven to cool for 1 hour.
- Using a flat metal spatula to lift the Pavlova off the baking sheet you can put it onto a serving dish…or gently lift the parchment paper off the baking sheet supporting the Pavlova & slide it onto a serving plate. (The notes on the recipe say this can be made 2 hours ahead of time… I made it the night before, left it on the cookie sheet until I put the whipped cream on & served it the next day at dinner….it was fine)
- Whip the cream
- Put the whipped cream into the centre circle you formed, Leaving the sides bare….***unless your Pavlova is cracked like mine was…in which case I put cream on the cracks!!! & I also put the strawberries around the edge to cover the cracks1 I put the cream on the Pavlova before dinner & put it in the fridge until I was going to serve it
- Take the Pavlova out of the fridge & top with berries
- Use a serrated knife to cut it when serving.