Sunday, June 21, 2015

Pavlova's Dog

Note: There are no references to dogs in today's post.  Sorry.

I've been graduated from culinary school for over a year now, and I've wanted to try making a pavlova for, oh, I'd say probably the last two years.

Well, I can finally cross it off the bucket list.

Our garden's kale crop is phenomenal, and when I put the all-call out on Facebook, one really good super-duper friend responded with, hey, I'll trade ya - kale for raspberries!?

KALE YES!

A pavlova is a meringue dessert with Down Under origins (New Zealand, I believe, gets the formal credit, although Australia claims ownership as well).

Meringues are a confection that consist of mainly egg whites, sugar, cream of tartar.  There's a lot of whipping and adding and monitoring that goes into meringue, and perhaps that's why it's something people don't usually attempt.  It bakes in the oven at a low temperature (200 F) for nearly two hours.  That, in and of itself, might deter others.

The springboard recipe for my pavlova is from Splendid Table: Strawberry-Raspberry Pavlova

I didn't have strawberries on hand, but I had some pretty amazing raspberries.  I didn't do the sugar-the-berries-release-the-juice step because these were already pretty juicy.  And the meringue and the whipped cream already had sugar in it as well.  (Although, in the future, I think I would do a light powdered sugar dusting over the berries)  I also skipped the mascarpone and went with a simple whipped cream spread.

And really, this dessert was one of the easiest I've ever done.  It's beautiful, airy, light, and crisp-on-the-outside, chewy-on-the-inside.  A word, though, this is definitely a presentation piece...once you cut it, it's not as pretty anymore.  I think that's probably why when I Googled 'pavlova' Images...90% of the photos that pop up are of whole, uncut pavlovas.

Try it.  It's the perfect summer dessert, really.

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