I will always remember the night that this unique pavlova recipe came into our lives.
It was Christmas eve and as tradition requires, we were at Nate’s Dad’s house for the traditional Christmas function. These are often gargantuan feasts of everything roasted plus ice cream or pudding for dessert. As typically happens, the roasting is running late. We are the only ones with a child under 2 that requires sleep so it was decided to have dinner at our child’s normal bed time. For anyone with (or has had a child that age), I am sure you can understand the disaster that was about to unfold!
Dinner was on the table and as soon as everyone was seated, our little gentleman decided to have a fairly large meltdown and demand sleep. No real problem at this point as there is a cot in one of Grandad’s spare rooms. On closer inspection, we notice the cot is full of materials and craft supplies and has obviously become a storage area. Spare bed with no safety rails became the next target! Nate and I then spent the rest of the night swapping between being the safety rail, eating dinner and opening gifts.
It was on one of these swaps that Nate came in and whispered “you have to go and try that pavlova. It is the best pavlova I think I have ever had…and…it’s so easy!”.
I was intrigued, and if honest, a little bit dubious. I have had some great pavlovas so that was a pretty big call!
I sidled up to the table and eyed the pavlova. It looked like a pavlova. It had the right amount of cream and fruit. I put the first spoonful in my mouth and it was smooth, light and yet, somehow, the egg-whites were also creamy.
My father in law then described the recipe we have reproduced below and it would seem to be overly simple but it works! My favourite part of this is that you don’t need to let the pavlova cool in the oven. You can take it straight out of the oven and it will not be damaged! It also cools a lot faster this way.
We love our pavlovas with fresh fruit but the most popular one in our house is with banana, caramel and praline macadamia pieces. What are your favorite pavlova toppings?
4 egg whites
1 cup caster sugar
1/2 tspn white vinegar
1 dessert spoon cornflour
1. Pre-heat your oven to 200 degrees Celsius.
2. Prepare a baking tray by placing baking paper on it. Make sure you have a dab of butter or spray oil on the tray so that the paper will stay in one place whilst you are spooning the pavlova mix onto it.
3. Using an electric mixer, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form.
4. Add the cup of caster sugar all at once and then beat the mixture for a minute.
5. Remove the bowl from the mixer and fold in the white vinegar and corn flour.
6. Spoon the mix onto the prepared tray. Mould this into the shape you want the pavlova to be. I general leave it pretty heaped but it does not move too much whilst baking so you can change the shape now if you wish. Don’t mess with the egg whites too much though, as you want to get it into the oven pretty quickly from this point.
7. Place the tray in the oven and immediately turn the temperature down to 120 degrees Celsius.
8. Cook for 90 minutes
Cool and the decorate using cream or mascarpone and your favourite toppings!