Mixed Berry Pavlova
If I had to name one thing that I begin to crave every time summer rolls around it would have to be a mixed berry pavlova. One that is piled high with multiple layers, citrus curd, a treasure trove of fresh jewel tone berries, and a light and fluffy whipped topping. Otherwise known at our house as dessert perfection.
I am enamored by the way a few simple ingredients completely transform into perfect little cloud like layers just waiting to be devoured.
There isn’t really much more that a girl could ask for in a decadent dessert. The fragile meringue layers are super delicate so you must quickly eat this dessert after you assemble it. No time to sit and stare at its beauty my friend…eat that baby before she withers away!
- 4 large egg whites, at room temperature
- pinch of salt
- 2 teaspoons champagne vinegar
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 cup caster sugar, AKA: superfine sugar
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- Preheat the oven to 200°F with a rack in the lower third. Use an 8-inch pan to trace 3 circles with pencil on parchment. Place the parchment, marking side down, on baking sheets.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on low speed until foamy. Add the salt, vinegar, and cornstarch. Beat on medium speed for about 3 minutes until soft peaks form. Add the caster sugar in 4 additions, beating on medium-high speed until meringue is stiff and glossy, about 5 minutes. Beat in the almond extract.
- Use a silicone spatula to spread ⅓ of the meringue on each of the parchment paper circles, then use the back of a spoon to thin out the center while building up the sides. You want the pavlova edges to be approximately 1¼ - 1½ inches high.
- Bake until the meringue is glossy and hard to the touch, approximately 1 hour and 40 minutes; if the meringue begins to turn darker in color reduce the temperature of the oven slightly. When the meringue has finished cooking, turn off the oven and let it cool in the oven with the door closed for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight. The pavlova will lift easily off the parchment.
- Gently spread ⅓ cup citrus curd over of one of the discs almost to the edges and top with a sprinkling of ½ cup sliced strawberries. Set the second pavlova layer on top and repeat the process of layering ⅓ cup citrus curd and the remaining sliced strawberries. Place the last layer of the pavlova on top and gently use a spoon to mound the coconut whipped cream in the center and spread out towards the sides leaving about a 1½- 2 inch border.Top the whipped cream with all of the blueberries, raspberries, and a couple of whole strawberries just for effect. Serve immediately.
Pavlova's are very delicate, do not top them or add any liquid like curd or whipped cream until you are ready to serve.