descher posted 02-01-99

Pavlova - The Aussie Dessert

Pavlova can be difficult to cook as the meringue needs a short period of high heat to set and crisp the exterior and then a long period of cooling heat to set but not dry out the marshmallowy interior. Experiment with your own oven. If syrupy droplets form on the surface of the meringue, you'll know you have overcooked it; liquid oozing from the meringue is a sign of undercooking.

4 egg whites (at room temp)
pinch of salt
250 g (9 oz) Castor (fine) Sugar
2 tsp cornflour
1 tsp white-wine vinegar
few drops pure vanilla
300 ml (10 fl. oz.) cream, firmly whipped
pulp of 10 passionfruit (or tinned passionfruit pulp)or see 'Note:'

Preheat oven to 180c (360F) Line a baking tray with baking paper. Draw a 20cm (8 inch) circle on the paper.

Beat egg whites and salt until satiny peaks form. Beat in sugar, a third at a time, until meringue is stiff and shiny. Sprinkle over cornflour, vinegar and vanilla and fold in lightly. Mound onto paper-lined baking tray within circle and flatten top and smooth sides.

Place in oven, immediately reduce heat to 150C (300F) and cook for 1 1/4 hours. Turn off oven and leave pavlova in it to cool completely. Invert pavlova onto a platter, pile on cream and spoon over passionfruit pulp.

Note: (As an alternative, you can add strawberries, kiwi fruit, banana, banana and passionfruit,peaches, mango, etc.) A row of sliced strawberries, and then a row of sliced kiwi fruit looks fantastic - colour wise.

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