I love pavlova; the crisp shattering shell that gives way to soft, gooey marshmallow insides gets me every time. I absolutely cannot have pavlova in the house, just because I can (and will) consume the entire thing.
Pavlova’s fantastic because you’ll get a couple of oohs and ahhs when you bring it out, but the secret is it’s really, really simple to make. My current favourite is a combination of dark chocolate and delicious farm fresh raspberries.
I made this for a birthday celebration dinner for my brother and my two-year-old nephew was so entranced by the pile of ruby red raspberries that he dragged a stool over to the countertop where it was sitting to look at it (and beg for raspberries of course)
Luckily we got to it before he ate all the raspberries off. The magic in this dessert is the contrast in textures and flavours. Fresh softly whipped cream tempers the sweetness of the meringue and the dark chocolate adds a hint of bitterness.
Chocolate Raspberry Pavlova Recipe adapted from nigella.com
4 egg whites
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
30 grams dark chocolate, roughly chopped
1 1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
2 pints raspberries
Preheat the oven to 350˚F and line a baking tray with baking parchment.
Beat the egg whites until satiny peaks form, and then beat in the sugar a spoonful at a time until the meringue is stiff and shiny. Sprinkle over the cocoa and the chopped chocolate. Gently fold everything until the cocoa is thoroughly mixed in. Mound on to a baking sheet in a circle approximately 8 inches in diameter, smoothing the sides and top. Place in the oven, then immediately turn the temperature down to 300˚F and bake for about one to one and a quarter hours. When it’s ready it should look crisp around the edges and on the sides and be dry on top, but when you poke the centre you should feel a give beneath your fingers. Turn off the oven and open the door slightly, and let the chocolate meringue disc cool completely.
When you’re ready to serve, invert on to a big, flat-bottomed plate. Whisk the cream till thick but still soft and pile it on top of the meringue, then scatter the raspberries and enjoy.