The story goes that this classic dessert was created by a chef in New Zealand in honor of Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova after she toured that country in the 1920s. It is an ethereal, crisp meringue with a soft, marshmallowy center topped with whipped cream and seasonal fruit. Here it happens to be strawberries, but it lends itself to other berries, cherries, peaches, or in the winter pomegranate seeds.
- Yield: 8 Servings
- Preparation Time: 40 Minutes
- 6 egg whites
- Pinch salt
- Pinch cream of tartar
- 1½ cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
- 2½ teaspoons cornstarch
- 4 cups strawberries
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 10 mint leaves
- 1½ cups whipping cream
- ½ cup crème fraîche
- Allow egg whites to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil. Draw a 9-inch circle on the paper or foil. Invert paper or foil so the circle is on the reverse side.
- Preheat oven to 250°F. For meringue, in a large mixing bowl beat egg whites, salt, and cream of tartar with an electric mixer on medium until soft peaks form (tips curl). Add the 1½ cups sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating on high until stiff peaks form (tips stand straight). Beat in lemon juice and vanilla. Sift cornstarch over egg white mixture; using a rubber spatula, gently fold cornstarch into egg white mixture.
- Spread meringue over circle on paper or foil, building up edges slightly to form a shell. Bake for 1½ hours (do not open door). Turn off oven; let meringue dry in oven with door closed for 1 hour. For Filling
- 20 minutes before serving, clean, hull, and slice the strawberries. Place strawberries in a large bowl. Toss berries with the 2 tablespoons sugar. Tear mint leaves; gently stir mint into strawberry mixture. Let stand for 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl beat the whipping cream and crème fraîche with an electric mixer on medium (or beat with a whisk or rotary beater) until soft peaks form (tips curl).
- Place meringue shell on a large platter. Spread the cream mixture into the meringue shell. Spoon the strawberry mixture over the cream mixture. Serve immediately.
Serving Size 1
Nutritional Value Per Serving
Calories from Fat:
% Daily Value*
* Above mentioned %DVs (Percent Daily Values) are based on 2,000 calorie food intake.
DVs (Daily values) may be vary depending upon individuals daily calorie needs. Above nutritional values are estimates and should only be used as a guide for approximation. They are not allfoodchef.com recommendations. Calculations are based on average weight of 194 lbs. and ages of 19 to 50 years.