My life is full of meringue memories.
Slow Sunday mornings, no school, my favorite childhood TV program on, a plate of freshly baked snow-white vanilla meringues next to whichever fruit is in season. Sheer happiness.
11 years old. My friends crowding over a cassette player I just received from my “American” grandma, listening to the sounds of the forbidden West, snacking on the creme-colored cinnamon meringue.
Passover dinner 2013. My family of four gathered around the holiday table. Wine, tea, strawberries and, of course, crispy meringues.
Black Swan Pavlova
This year tiny crispy meringues have been upsized and fancified to the ethereal and magnificent Pavlova.
The original recipe calls for whipped cream, however you can make this dessert Parve by replacing it with Coconut Whipped Cream or healthy by using creamed bananas instead. See below for these modifications and additional simplifications!
Adapted from One Pot Wonders
- 4 egg whites at room temperature
- ½ tsp cream of tartar
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- 1 cup ready-to-use whipped cream or one of the following: homemade dairy, coconut or banana whipped cream (recipes for the homemade versions below)
- 1 cup of mixed berries and fruit (ideas: blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, red or black currants, halved cherries, halved grapes). I made mine with strawberries, blueberries and red grapes
- 4 passion fruit
- Heat the oven to 300F. Add the egg whites to the mixer. Start the machine slowly, increasing the speed as the whites froth. Add the cream of tartar, continuing at the top speed until you have firm peaks. Add the sugar, a tablespoon at a time, until mixture is glossy and stiff. Turn the mixer off.
- Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Spread the meringue in a shape you want, with the sides slightly higher than the center. Bake for 30 minutes, reduce to 220F and cook for an hour until crisp and cracked on the outside, half cooked and soft inside. If the meringue starts to brown, turn off the oven and leave it to finish cooking as the oven cools.
- Leave to cook in the closed oven. Carefully peel the parchment paper off the meringue and transfer to a serving plate. Spoon cream of choice into the middle; the meringue may split or crack but that is part of its charm. Tumble the fruit into the middle of the Pavlova and scrape the passion fruit seeds and juice over the top.
Whipped Cream (dairy)
- Place a metal mixing bowl and metal whisk into the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes
- Place the sugar into the mixing bowl and add the whipping cream. Whisk just until the cream reaches stiff peaks
Whipped Coconut Cream (parve)
- Open a can of coconut milk and scoop out the top layer into a mixer bowl
- Mix on high speed for 15-20 seconds, just until the mixture turns to liquid
- Add the powdered sugar and mix on high speed for 1-2 minutes, until light and creamy
Whipped creamless banana cream (healthy, parve)
- 2 ripe bananas
- 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- Add bananas and vanilla to the food processor
- Puree for about 3 minutes. The bananas should get increasingly smooth and creamy