Saturday, 23 May 2015

Rippled Pavlova with Lemon Curd Whipped Cream + Berries.

Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu!

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

In May, we bake meringues.
I don't know how exactly this became a thing except last weekend when I remembered this time last year, and felt I should carry on the meringue in May tradition.
Last year was when this cake was born (out of a disaster, I might add). I made it twice again in the same month and loved it every time.
We bake meringues a lot round here. Reason being? I have a few relatives who are gluten-free and meringues being naturally so are perfect for them.

But the real reason? Simply that the 2-ingredient humble meringue, no matter what you pair it with (coffee anyone?), is just so good. Crisp, beautiful and in my case, rippled on the outside with the most marshmallow-like interior, it goes well with anything.
We kept things real simple this time with fresh berries and lemon curd whipped cream. So good. Get out your food colour gels people, it's time to make rippled pavlovas this bank holiday weekend!

Meringue, previously: Eton MessStrawberry PavlovaChocolate Meringue RouladeOrange Meringue PieStrawberry Meringue Layer CakeCappuccino Pavlova.

A Simple List of Ingredients: 
1. Sugar
2. Egg Whites
3. Red Food Colour Gel
4. Double Cream
5. Vanilla Essence
6. Icing Sugar
7. Lemon Curd
8. Fresh Berries

Bismillah, let's begin!

First job, pre-heat the oven to 200C/Gas Mark 6
Then, get the eggs separated. For meringues, the ratio is always twice the amount of sugar to egg whites. So, for this recipe, you'll need 150 grams Egg Whites. I did this by separating the white in a small bowl and then pouring it into the jug on the weighing scales - this just makes sure that you get the right amount as all eggs vary in size.
I ended up using 4 large eggs.

That's the messy, sticky eggs out of the way - now onto the sugar. Take a baking tray and line it with paper. Place on 300 grams Caster Sugar. The original recipe used caster but I actually used granulated and it worked out fine so use what you have.
Spread the sugar on the tray and place in the oven for about 5 minutes or until the edges are just beginning to melt.

Meanwhile, place the egg whites into a stand mixer (or use a hand mixer). The bowl that you use should be grease-free. Give the bowl a wipe with lemon juice beforehand. 
Begin whisking slowly at first then increase the speed to high and whisk until the egg whites have stiff peaks.

By now, the 5 minutes for the sugar should be up. Take it out when the edges are just beginning to melt.
After you have taken the sugar out, turn the oven temperature down to 100C/Gas Mark 1/4. Leave the door of the oven slightly open to help it cool down faster.

Back to the egg whites! The egg whites should be so stiff that you should be able to hold the bowl upside-down without the whites falling out.

Once the egg whites are at this stage, it's time to add the sugar. 

With the mixer on the highest speed, add 1 tablespoon of the hot sugar at a time, ensuring that the egg whites come to stiff peaks after each addition. It doesn't matter about the smaller lumps of sugar but don't add the larger, caramelised bits at the edge.

Once all the sugar has been added, whisk on the highest speed for about 5-7 minutes.

After this final whisk, the mixture should be really glossy and smooth with stiff peaks.

Feel it between your fingers - you shouldn't be able to feel any gritty sugar bits.

It's time to bake the meringue so line a baking tray measuring about 33cm x 25cm with baking paper. Use a few blobs of the meringue to help the paper stick.

Put the meringue onto the tray and use the back of a spoon to shape it into a rough rectangle - it does not have to perfect.

Before we bake, it's time to get the ripple in our rippled pavlova. I used Poppy Red Food Colour Gel but you can use any colour. Or you could leave this step out - the pavlova will taste just as good!

Squeeze the food colour over the meringue and use a knife to swirl it through and create a beautiful ripple effect.

And, we're ready to bake!

Bake the meringue for about 40-50 minutes until it is crisp on the outside and lifts off the paper.
Once baked, switch the oven off and let it cool completely. Leave the door slightly open to help it cool faster - I actually left mine overnight.

Once the meringue has cooled completely, it's time to pile it high with whatever you like!


Today, I'm going to show you how I topped mine - with a lemon curd whipped cream and fresh berries. The cream is the perfect partner for the meringue. Indeed, a meringue without whipped cream would be kinda strange in our house.


If lemon curd isn't your thing, why not try a jammy strawberry finish instead. Oooh, and if coffee is your thing, you have got to make this!



Uh oh, now I want coffee. And, it's 10:18pm. Not good. 


Let's focus on making this lemon curd whipped cream instead. Gather together your ingredients - double cream, lemon curd, vanilla essence and icing sugar.


Take 600ml Double Cream.


Grab a mixing bowl - I used a stand mixer again!


Pour in the cream.


Next, to add a little sweetness and because I couldn't resist, vanilla essence.


Add 2 teaspoons Vanilla Essence.


Then, for a little more sweetness, icing sugar. You don't need a whole lot as the meringue is very sweet too.


In goes, 4 tablespoons Icing Sugar.


Then stick on the whisk attachment.


And, get whisking!


Whisk the cream until you get soft peaks.


You could leave the cream as it is - it would be just as yum but we fancied a little lemon curd.


I love lemon curd - it's so zingy, fresh and so different to jam. 


Add Lemon Curd, to taste.


Give it a good stir in.


Then spread the cream onto your meringue.


Leave a little border at the edge though - you want to able to see the ripple.


Finally, take any Fresh Berries you like. I used raspberries, strawberries and blueberries - they were a little on the tart side but tbh that complimented the sweet, mallowy meringue oh so well.


Tumble the fresh berries (or any fruit you like) over the cream and we are done!





A pavlova piled high with fresh fruit and softly whipped cream is a must in our house at this time of year - May wouldn't be May without one.



If you've never eaten a pavlova before, you must must must give this recipe a go - sweet, crispy yet soft meringue, rippled white and pink, with the whipped cream and its hint of tart lemon matched with those fresh, bright berries. It's summer on a plate and I hope you bake one soon!

Full Written Recipe:


Rippled Pavlova with Lemon Curd Whipped Cream + Berries.

Prep Time: About 25 minutes.
Bake Time: About 40-50 minutes.
Serves: A crowd!

Ingredients

For the Rippled Pavlova
150 grams Egg Whites (I used 4 large Eggs)
300 grams Sugar (caster, if you have it)
Red Food Colour Gel, as needed

For the Lemon Curd Whipped Cream
600ml Double Cream
2 teaspoons Vanilla Essence
4 tablespoons Icing Sugar
Lemon Curd, to taste

For the Berries
Raspberries, as needed
Blueberries, as needed
Strawberries, as needed

Method

First, make the rippled pavlova. Pre-heat the oven to 200C/Gas Mark 6.
Place the sugar onto a baking tray lined with paper. Put it into the oven for 5 minutes or until the edges are just beginning to melt.

Place the egg whites into a grease-free bowl (give the bowl a wipe with lemon juice beforehand). Whisk slowly at first, then increase the speed to high and whisk until the egg whites have stiff peaks. The bowl should be able to held upside-down without the eggs falling out. Stop whisking just before it turns into a cotton woolly appearance.

By now, the sugar should be done. Take it out of the oven and turn the oven down to 100C/Gas 1/4. Leave the oven door slightly open to help it cool down faster.

With the mixer on full speed, add 1 tablespoon of the hot sugar at a time, ensuring that it comes back to stiff peaks after each addition. It doesn’t matter about the smaller lumps of sugar but don’t add the larger, caramelised bits at the edge.

Once all the sugar has been added, whisk on the highest speed for about 5-7 minutes or until the mixture is really glossy and smooth with stiff peaks. Feel it between your fingers – you shouldn’t be able to feel any gritty sugar bits.

Line a baking tray measuring about 33cm x 25cm with baking paper. Use a few blobs of the meringue to help the paper stick.

Put the meringue onto the tray and use the back of a spoon to shape it into a rough rectangle – it does not have to be perfect.

Then, squeeze the food colour gel all over and use a knife to swirl it through the meringue creating a beautiful ripple effect.

Bake the meringue for about 40-50 minutes or until it is crisp on the outside and lifts off the paper. Switch the oven off and leave to cool completely inside with the door slightly open. I left mine like this overnight.

To make the lemon curd whipped cream, pour the double cream into a bowl. Add the vanilla essence and icing sugar – whisk with an electric mixer until you get soft peaks in the cream.

Stir as much lemon curd as you like through the whipped cream. Dollop the cream over the meringue – leave a border at the edge so you can see the ripples.

Tumble on the fresh berries, slice and serve!

{Adapted from The Meringue Girls}

This Time One Year Ago:

This Time Two Years Ago:

Keep me in your duas, please, and enjoy your pavlova, 

Wasalaam!