Pavlova seems to have become the new national celebratory cake in this country too. Before the Constitution Day, the newspapers and food magazines were filled with recipe suggestions for how to make a good pavlova. I initially got to know this wonderful cake through my other half, who is Australian, where this cake origins from, or it may be New Zealand, but the main point is that it was pretty unknown in Norway until a few years ago.
Ralph first wanted it for his birthday several years ago, and it has been something we add to our celebration ever since, be it birthdays, national celebratory days or just as a dessert with friends.
You can easily adapt a pavlova to the seasonal fruits available and you can also alter the recipe of the meringue base to add a twist to the flavor. For this pavlova, I added some sweet licorice syrup to the meringue. Just enough to give it a hint ot licorice flavor. The flavor fits well with the cream, berries and lemon curd.
Set the oven to 200 degrees Celsius.
Separate the eggs and add the egg whites to your baking bowl. Ensure the bowl is clean and dry before starting this process.
Add the pinch of salt to the egg whites and start whisking with a balloon whisk attachements on high speed until it is nice and airy. Add the sugar a little at a time (1-2 tbsp) and let the machine whisk well in between. Once all the sugar is added, add the corn flour gently and let it whisk well to incorporate all. You may wish to turn down the speed a little to avoid a cloud of corn flour in your kitchen. Then add the licorice and the vinegar and whisk for another minute to incorporate everything well. It should be thick and glossy and stick to the whisk when you lift it up.
Add the mixture to a large piping bag fitted with a large open star decorating tip. Onto a baking tray lined with waxed baking paper, pipe out small meringue nests, starting with piping out a circle for the middle and continuing in circles around it. Make the circles 2 or 3 layers tall depending on how tall you want the nests. If you have made the meringue properly and gotten the right texture, it should keep its shape after having been piped out.
Put the trays into the oven. Turn the temperature down to 140 degrees C and cook for 45 minutes. Once done, turn the oven off, open the door and leave the meringues in the oven to cool down.
Piping out the nests may take a little practice, but they definitely do not have to look perfect to taste great. Mine definitely do not look perfect. 🙂
For these pavlovas I used whipped cream, lemon curd and fresh berries.
The whipped cream I made with 2 teaspoons of vanilla sugar.
The lemon curd recipe you can find here.
Add a couple of tablespoons of whipped cream in the nest. You can use a piping bag too for this job, which makes it easier to divide out evenly (and it is cleaner).
Add a tablespoon of lemon curd over the cream.
Finish by added some fresh raspberries, strawberries and blueberries. I cleaned and cut the strawberries into quaters. The rest of the berries were just rinsed in cold water.
Serve immediately to your guests.