My caption almost throws pavlova under the bus. I mean it looks like I’m saying “hey if you egg whites left over from a more superior dessert, make pavlova.” But, what I’m really saying is pavlova is a very easy and heavenly dessert to make and you can have it more often if you remember this and save those egg whites, especially now that home made ice cream season is approaching.
Of course, I’m taking for granted that you already know what pavlova is, and you may not, as it’s a dessert much more popular from down under claimed to originate in either Australia or New Zealand in honor of the Russian ballerina, Anna Pavlova. Whoever made it first, matters not, as both countries embrace it and have shared it with us. It’s basically a baked meringue, that is crispy on outside and similar to a marshmallow on the inside. It’s then filled with a homemade whipped cream and fruit. It sounds terribly sweet and rich, but once the components are stacked and eaten together, the cream balances the sugar and the fruit brings the fresh, bright taste and it’s exquisite. The lovely thing for one who entertains at home and doesn’t want to worry about a dessert, the pavlova can be made earlier in the day, the cream whipped ahead, and it can be assembled in a mere minute. The presentation is spectacular, and you can even make individual servings.
At first, it may seem a daunting task, but it’s really quite simple to make once you understand what the egg whites will look like and you process your sugar to a finer texture than what we Americans are used to. The sugar used is not confectioner’s or powdered sugar and not regular sugar. This texture can be achieved putting sugar in a magic bullet or food processor.
This is how the egg whites should look before arranging on a baking sheet.
Place mixture on parchment or silpat and arrange in circle.
As Easter is around the corner, you might top with fresh coconut and pineapple.
TELL ME, what is your favorite spring time dessert?
Pavlova and What to do with Left Over Egg Whites
- 8 egg whites
- 2 cups fine sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- Preheat oven at 250 degrees.
- Beat egg whites with electric mixer or kitchen aid type mixer until egg whites begin to foam.
- Add in sugar, cream of tarter and beat for a minute or two. Add vanilla.
- Beat mixture until it’s similar to a marshmallow cream as pictures above.
- Using parchment paper, draw a circle (8-9 inches). Turn upside down and place the mixture on circle, leaving a well in center. Use remaining to make smaller pavlova. Or, you could make one very large pavlova. Instead of parchment paper, you could use a silpat, which is what I do.
- Turn oven down to 180 degrees. Bake for one hour. Turn oven off. In 30 minutes open oven door. Continue to allow pavlova to cool in oven before removing. Cool completely before serving.
- Fill with heavy whipped cream (I prefer not sweetened) and top with fresh fruit.
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