Classic Pavlova Recipe with Mixed Berries
Pavlova recipe basicsRegardless of where it came from, here’s where we are right now: A layer of meringue, crisp on the outside and a little bit gooey on the inside. A layer of whipped cream, lightly sweetened. A layer of raspberries, blueberries and strawberries, kissed with a touch of sugar and flavor-deepening balsamic. Oh, hello. We’re in a good place. That’s where we are.
For the meringue
- 4 large egg whites, at room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the whipped cream
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the berry topping
- 1 cup raspberries
- 1 cup blueberries
- 1 cup sliced strawberries
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- For the meringue: Preheat oven to 250°F.* Place a sheet of parchment paper on a baking sheet (turn the baking sheet upside down if it has a rim, so you can slide the meringue off later). If you like, draw a 9-inch circle as a guide on one side of the parchment, then flip it over so the circle is on the underside. (You can trace a plate or a cake pan to make it easy.)
- Place the egg whites into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk, or into a large bowl if using electric beaters. Whip until stiff peaks form. (If you lift the beaters or a spoon out of the egg whites, the tips of the peaks that form should stand up without falling over.) Add sugar a tablespoon at a time, beating for 30 seconds or so between additions. You should have a big, glossy bowl of what looks like marshmallow fluff at this point. Sprinkle in cornstarch, vinegar and vanilla and fold in with a spatula. Spoon the mixture into a 9-inch circle on the parchment, using the guide if you made one. Bake for 60 minutes, then turn off the oven and let meringue cool completely in the oven.
- This temperature produces a slightly browned/cream-colored exterior. If you prefer a perfectly white meringue, you can bake in a 180°F oven for 90 minutes.
- For the whipped cream: Combine the heavy cream, sugar and vanilla in a stand mixer or bowl and whip until just firm enough to hold its shape.
- For the berry topping: stir together berries, sugar and balsamic in a medium bowl.
- To serve: Right before serving, slide meringue onto a cake plate. Gently spread whipped cream over the surface and top with berries and accumulated juices. Slice into wedges to serve. (Or go at it family style with long spoons -- no judgment.)