Pavlova with Fresh Fruit
(courtesy of Robin Jones, pastry chef, Roxy, Eldorado Hotel Resort in Reno. Serves 6)
This meringue-based dessert was named after Russian ballerina, Anna Pavlova. It was created in the 1920s on the occasion of her tour to Australia and New Zealand, where the dessert still is in those nations’ culinary repertoires. It is a favorite in the summer when fruit is at its peak.
4 egg whites, at room temperature
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
⅛ teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla
Fresh berries or sliced ripe fruit
Preheat oven to 275 degrees F.
Place sheet of parchment paper on sheet pan. Draw 9-inch circle on paper, using 9-inch plate as guide. Turn paper over so circle is on reverse side. (You don’t want pen or pencil marks on meringue.)
Mix egg whites, salt, and cream of tartar in electric mixer, using whisk attachment. Beat on medium speed until soft peaks form. Sdd sugar slowly.
Turn to high speed and mix until stiff peaks form. Remove bowl from mixer and gently fold in cornstarch, white vinegar, and vanilla.
Pipe out or pile meringue on parchment paper, keeping within outlined circle. Smooth within circle, indenting it slightly to hold fruit.
Bake for about 45 minutes. Turn off oven, keep door closed, and let meringue cool completely.
Remove cooled meringue to serving plate and spread top with prepared berries or fresh, sliced fruit, leaving a little border of meringue. If desired, top with fruit coulis and/or whipped cream.