Chocolate Pavlova Tested Recipe
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For some reason a Chocolate Pavlova does not garner the attention of a regular
Pavlova. I hope to change that with this recipe. Although it still has that
wonderful crispy crust of a regular Pavlova, and the
inside still has the texture of a soft marshmallow, what is different is that it
has a nice chocolate flavor and color. This comes from adding both cocoa
powder and chopped semisweet chocolate to the traditional
A Pavlova belongs to the meringue
family but it is an unusual meringue in that a little cornstarch (corn flour)
and vinegar are added to the beaten egg whites and sugar. It is important when
making any meringue that the egg whites reach maximum volume, so make sure your
mixing bowl and whisk are clean and free of grease. Since we need just the
whites of the eggs, the eggs will need to be separated. It is easier to do this
while the eggs are still cold. Once separated, cover the egg whites and let them
come to room temperature before using (about 30 minutes). Cover and refrigerate
the egg yolks for another use. I like to use superfine sugar (castor) when
making this meringue as it dissolves faster into the egg whites than regular
granulated white sugar. You can make your own by processing 1 cup (200 grams)
granulated white sugar in your food processor until very fine, about 30 - 60
seconds. Once the egg whites and sugar form stiff peaks it is time to gently
fold in the cornstarch, cocoa powder, vanilla extract, vinegar, and chopped
You may want to
serve the Pavlova the way many Australians do, and that is
to turn the Pavlova upside down on the serving plate.
the advantage of keeping the base of the Pavlova nice and crisp. Passion
fruit is the traditional fruit to serve with a Pavlova probably because
it is grown in both Australia and New Zealand, where the Pavlova was invented.
Unfortunately, here in North America, passion fruit is hard to find and if you
can find it, it is very
expensive. So a great alternative is to use berries like raspberries, blackberries, and
even strawberries. If I can I also like to add slices of kiwi fruit as its
acidity pairs nicely with the sweet meringue and cream. While you can make the
Pavlova a day or two before serving, once you top it with the cream and berries,
it must be served immediately.
Chocolate Pavlova: Preheat
oven to 250 degrees F (130 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and draw an 8 inch (20 cm)
circle on the parchment paper.
In the bowl
of your electric mixer, with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites until
foamy. Add the cream of tartar and continue to beat on
medium-high speed until they hold soft peaks. Start adding the sugar, a
tablespoon at a
time, and continue to beat until the meringue holds stiff peaks. (Test
to see if the sugar is fully dissolved by rubbing a little of the meringue between
your thumb and index finger. The meringue should feel smooth, not gritty. If it feels gritty
the sugar has not fully dissolved so keep beating until it feels smooth between
your fingers). Using a large rubber spatula, fold in the vinegar and
vanilla extract. In a small strainer, sift the cocoa powder and cornstarch over the top of the
meringue and, with the rubber spatula, fold in. Lastly, fold in the
Gently spread the
meringue inside the circle drawn on the parchment paper, smoothing the edges.
about 1 1/4 - 1 1/2 hours or until the outside is dry. (The outside of the meringues will feel firm to the touch, if gently pressed. There will be cracks and you will see that the inside is soft and moist.) Turn the oven off, leave the door slightly ajar, and let the meringue
cool completely in the oven.
meringue can be made and stored in a cool dry place, in an airtight container, for a few days.
serving gently place the meringue on a serving plate. Whip the cream in
your electric mixer, with the whisk attachment, until soft peaks form.
Sweeten with the sugar and then mound the softly whipped cream into
the center of the meringue. Arrange the fruit on top of the cream.
Serve immediately as this dessert does not hold and once you add the cream and
fruit the meringue will start to break down.
6 large (180 grams) egg whites,
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 1/4 cups (250 grams) superfine (castor)
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon pure
1 teaspoon cornstarch (corn flour)
3 tablespoons (20 grams) Dutch
processed cocoa powder
2 ounces (55 grams)
semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate,
1 cup (240 ml) heavy whipping
1 tablespoon (14 grams) granulated
Fresh Fruit - raspberries,
blackberries, strawberries, and kiwi fruit are some good choices
Alexander, Stephanie. 'The
Cook's Companion'. Lantern Penguin Group (Australia). Victoria: 2004.
The Australian Women's Weekly
"Sweet Old-fashioned Favourites". ACP Publishing Pty Limited:
Baird, Elizabeth. 'Canadian Living's Best -
Chocolate'. The Madison Press Limited: 1997.
Berry. Mary. 'Desserts and
Confections'. Dorling Kindersley Limited. London: 1994.
Lawson, Nigella. 'How to be
a Domestic Goddess'. Hyperion. New York: 2001.
Maree, Aaron. '100 Fabulous
Cakes and Tortes'. Angus & Robertson. New York: 1991.