This post was originally published on August 13, 2011 and I am updating it today with the video recipe from my new YoutTube Channel – AZCookbook with Feride. Please SUBSCRIBE to it and share it with your friends.
Pavlova Cake was created in honor of the legendary Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova when she toured Australia and New Zealand in the 20s of the 20th century. One theory holds that the cake originates in Australia, but New Zealanders claim Pavlova is their invention. Whoever created it deserves a big thank you.
This stunning cake consists of a meringue shell topped with luscious cream and fresh fruit, typically, passion fruit, kiwi, and strawberries, but may include other berries too, like in this recipe for Fresh Berry Pavlova Cake.
The meringue shell is absolutely delicious – it is marshmallow-tender on the inside and crispy on the outside. Whipped cream blanketing the shell and lots of fresh berries on top – this cake is pure delight.
WATCH HOW TO MAKE BERRY PAVLOVA HERE:
- Meringue Shell:
- 4 large egg whites, at room temperature (they should not be cold - important!)
- 1 teaspoon cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 cup (7 oz/190 g) superfine sugar (if you don't have superfine sugar, process regular granulated sugar in a food processor until fine, but not powdery)
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1¼ (300 ml/10 fl.oz ) cup heavy cream (butterfat content: 35-40%), chilled (important!)
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- Mixed fresh raspberries, blueberries, blackberries
- Fresh mint leaves
- Powdered sugar
- Preheat the oven to 200ºF (100ºC). Set the rack on the middle of the oven.
- Place the egg whites in a large mixing bowl (the bowl should be clean and absolutely dry). Beat with a mixer on medium speed until foamy.
- Add the vinegar and cornstarch. Continue to beat until soft peaks form, about 3 minutes.
- Adding the sugar gradually, about 1 tablespoon at a time, continue beating until the mixture is glossy and stiff, about 5 minutes. (To check if the mixture is ready, lift the beaters—if the mixture holds its shape as a pointy peak that stays on the beaters, it is ready. Or, turn the bowl upside down and if the mixture doesn't fall out, it is good). Add the vanilla extract and beat just until blended.
- Line the bottom of a rimless baking sheet with parchment paper. Invert a 9-inch (25 cm) plate onto the parchment paper. Draw a circle around it with a pen or a pencil. Turn the paper over. You will use the circle as a guide for your meringue border.
- Using a rubber spatula, gently spoon the meringue mixture onto the parchment paper and spread it to cover the circle. Thin out the center. This is where you will spoon the cream.
- Bake, without opening the oven, for 1 hour and 40 minutes, until it is glossy and hard to the touch.
- Remember - the shell should remain white!
- Turn off the oven and leave the shell to cool in the oven, without opening the door, until it has cooled completely, at least 2 hours. (The cooked meringue will be crisp on the outside, but marshmallow-tender on the inside).
- Carefully peel the parchment paper from the meringue and transfer it onto your cake stand.
- Meanwhile, prepare the cream. In a medium mixing bowl, beat the cream with sugar until thick. Spoon the mixture evenly into the center of the baked shell.
- Top the cream with mixed berries. Decorate with fresh mint leaves. Sift some powdered sugar on top (just a little). Serve immediately.
- Remember, the cake should be assembled right before you serve it.
- If you do this earlier, the meringue shell will soak up the moisture from the cream and will collapse when you cut the cake.