I HOPE YOU’RE HUNGRY, because I’ve made a Raspberry Pavlova for you. What a rapturous dessert! The chocolate meringue base is crispy on the outside, and marshmallow-gooey on the inside. The whipped cream center is sprinkled with chocolate shavings, and crowned with crimson thimbles. Ready to taste this work of art? Here’s the recipe:
No standing mixer for you? Use your hand-held electric beaters.
Let the whites twiddle their thumbs about for 30 minutes. They’ll whip better when they reach room temperature.
Break off 2 squares…
Cream of tartar is an acid that helps egg whites to achieve their full mounting potential. It also tends to whiten the whites.
Why use super-fine sugar? Because it dissolves instantly. Granulated sugar might give your meringue a gritty texture.
This next step is crucial:
You might as well lick the mixing bowl, too.
True Confession: I licked the spatula, the mixing bowl, and the whisk that was attached to my standing mixer.
Bake the meringue at 250°F for 75-90 minutes. Baking is complete when the sides of the “cake” look crisp, and the top feels dry. Turn off the oven, open the door slightly, and let the meringue rest for 2 hours, or until it cools to room temperature.
Note: Sometimes, even if you beat the meringue perfectly…even if you bake it for the right amount of time…and even if you leave it in the turned off oven…it will still collapse after it cools.
In the comments field below, let me know if you might like to try this poetry some day. It’s gorgeous to behold. It’s elegant to serve. And it’s outrageously delicious!
And here, for your convenience, is a copy-and-paste version of the above recipe:
Raspberry Pavlova (GF)
Kevin Lee Jacobs
Makes enough for 6-8 servings
For the meringue:
6 large egg whites at room temperature
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup super-fine (instant dissolving, or “caster”) sugar
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons baking cocoa
1 ounce (2 squares) bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
For the topping:
1 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/2 ounce (1 square) bittersweet chocolate, grated with a vegetable peeler
12 ounces red raspberries
Special Equipment: a standing mixer or electric hand-held beaters; a baking sheet lined with parchment paper
Preliminary step: Draw an 8-inch-diameter circle on the parchment paper.
Set the oven rack at the lower-middle position; preheat the oven to 300°F.
1. Beat the egg whites at medium speed. When they begin to foam, add the cream of tartar. Increase speed to high, and when soft peaks form, add the vinegar. With the machine still running, add the sugar 1 tablespoon at a time. Stop beating when the whites become firm and shiny.
2. Pour the cornstarch and the baking cocoa into a fine-mesh sieve, and sift them over the whites. Sprinkle on the chopped chocolate. Use a spatula to gently fold these additions into the whites.
3. Scoop the meringue into the center of the circle you drew on the parchment paper, smoothing its sides and top with a spatula. Place in the oven, and then immediately reduce the temperature to 250°F. Bake for 75-90 minutes, or until the sides look crisp and the top feels dry to the touch. Turn the oven off, open the door slightly, and let the “cake” cool for 2 hours.
Advance preparation: When completely cool, the meringue can be stored in an airtight container in a cool, dry place for up to 2 days.
4. Just before serving, whip the cream and sugar until thick but soft. Spread the cream atop the meringue, sprinkle on the chocolate gratings, and top with the raspberries.
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