For the past few Christmases, my family and I always have a pavlova. So it has now become our tradition. This time, I decided to switch things up by making a wreath rather than our usual pav (see here). It only adds to the Christmas spirit.Like most pavlovas, do expect some cracks. Due to the addition of cornflour and vinegar as well as the substantial amount of air in the mixture, it will deflate slightly as it cools. So it is difficult for cracks to be prevented.For the meringue, it is important to add the sugar gradually. I like to put the sugar into a ziplock bag, cut the corner off and pour it into the eggs with a steady stream. When all of it is added, the meringue should hold stiff peaks and be very glossy.The trick to a perfect pavlova is baking it long and slow. This will then result in a crunchy exterior but soft and marshmallowy interior. Once it is cooked, it must be left in the oven and cooled with the door ajar. Then you want to decorate. I like to use the traditional whipped cream and fresh fruit – like strawberries, blueberries and passionfruit. Since the pavlova already contains a lot of sugar, I prefer to leave the cream unsweetened. I also added some chopped pistachios. In my opinion, it tastes the best after the day its made. It just allows everything and all the flavours to properly develop. I actually have a funny story about pavlova. My mum, brother and I never used to like it for some reason. Then one day, my auntie did something a little different and added banana (as well as fresh berries) to the top, and we really enjoyed it. I don’t know why, but somehow the banana changed everything. This will be the last post of the year, because my family and I are going to Melbourne and Tasmania in a couple days. If I don’t see you till then, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. It is one of the most important times of the year; gathering as a family and remembering to appreciate everything that life has given you (not just presents).I’m also sorry if you don’t like the photos, they are a bit different to my usual style. Despite the photos, this pavlova is literally so delicious. I hope you’re all having a wonderful holiday. Sometimes, you don’t have to go to some crazy destination to have a great time. After all, it’s the people not the place. So here is one of my favourite quote of the week: (which I may of talked about before on a blog post): “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes ” – Marcel Proust.
- 6 large egg whites, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cup (300g) caster sugar
- 3 teaspoons cornflour, sifted
- 1 tsp vanilla bean paste or extract
- 1 1/2 tsp vinegar
- 500mL thickened cream, whipped
- Seasonal fruit of your choice (blueberries, strawberries, passionfruit etc.)
- Pistachios, optional
- Preheat oven to 150°C. Line a baking tray with parchment paper and draw a 20cm (8 inch) circle, then draw a smaller 15cm circle inside. Flip the paper over.
- Using an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat egg whites on low speed. Gradually increase the speed until soft peaks form.
- Very gradually add the sugar whilst beating on medium-high speed.
- Once all the sugar is added, beat on high speed for 4-5 minutes until stiff peaks form.
- Add sifted cornflour, vinegar and vanilla seeds (or vanilla extract). Gently fold until completely combined.
- Spoon the mixture onto the baking paper in a wreath shape, using the circle as a guide.
- Place into preheated oven (on bottom rack) and reduce temperature to 120°C. Bake for 70 minutes.
- Turn oven off. Leave pavlova in the oven with door ajar to cool completely.
- When cool, take it out of the oven and transfer onto a plate.
- Decorate with whipped cream and fruit of your choice.
- Refrigerate until cool and ready serve!