As far as I’m concerned you can’t beat a pavlova for the perfect summer dessert.
I’m going to top this one with marscapone cream, figs and honey for something a little different but it’s beautiful with classic summer berries, or caramelised peaches, or rhubarb and blood orange….. Essentially you can add anything you fancy.
The perfect pav for me is light and crispy on the outside and chewy in the middle…..
I find the perfect ratio is double the amount of sugar to egg whites. Heating your sugar before adding it to your beaten egg whites is entirely optional but I find it helps to dissolve the sugar into the egg more quickly and gives a glossier, more stable mixture.
- Prep Time: 30 mins
- Cook Time: 2 hours 0 mins
- Total Time: 2 hours 30 mins
- 300 g caster sugar
- 150 ml egg whites (approx 5 medium eggs)
- 1 tsp of rosewater
- 50 g of pistachio kernels blitzed / ground into a fine powder
- 8 figs
- 250 ml double cream
- 150 g marscapone
- 4 tbsp runny honey
- 50 g pistachio kernels, chopped
- Preheat your oven to 200c/gas mark 6. Line a baking sheet and an oven proof dish with baking paper.
- Place the caster sugar into your lined oven proof dish and heat in the oven for around 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile weigh your egg whites in a free standing (non plastic) mixer bowl. Whisk the egg whites, starting slowly at first until small bubbles have formed then increasing the speed whisk to form stiff peaks (this is where you hold it over your head to check that it’s ready - if you end up covered in egg, it wasn’t ready!). Be careful not to over beat, you want to stop it before it begins to look cotton woolly.
- Remove the sugar from the oven and turn the oven down to 100c/ gas mark 4 (you might want to leave the oven door open to help bring the temperature down).
- With the mixer on high add a tablespoon of sugar at a time, ensuring it comes back to stiff peaks before adding the next spoonful. Once all of the sugar has been added continue to whisk until the sugar has dissolved and you have a nice thick, glossy, shiny mixture that no longer feels gritty when you rub it between your thumb and finger - this should take between 5-7 minutes.
- Gently fold in the pistachio powder and rosewater, being careful not to knock out any of the air.
- Spoon your mixture onto the prepared baking tray into a circle of around 10” and make a well in the middle with the back of the spoon. Bake for around 2 hours until the meringue has a firm base and comes away from the baking paper easily. Leave to cool in the oven with the door slightly ajar (I use a the handle of wooden spoon to hold it open).
- Whip your double cream until its just thick and fold in the marscapone.
- Slice the figs into quarters - you can choose to keep them fresh, or lightly caramelise them in a frying pan with some sugar over a medium heat.
- Place the cooled meringue onto a serving dish, spoon the marscapone cream into the well, arrange your figs on top, sprinkle with pistachios and drizzle over the honey. Decorate with a few fresh rose petals (please only use petals that haven’t been treated with pesticides etc).