A couple of weeks ago Priya and I spent a night in and cooked. We decided on an Aussie theme, which consisted of a chicken and mushroom pie and a pavlova, which is simply a meringue base with cream and berries on top. The chicken and mushroom pie is still to come. As it was just the two of us we decided to modify the recipe to make it smaller, however I will give you the full size recipe here. We began by preheating the oven to 200 degrees F. Then separated four large, room temperature eggs. We kept the yolks to glaze the pie pastry. To have success with the egg whites I recommend using a metal or glass bowl and cleaning and drying it thoroughly before. We added a pinch of salt to the egg whites to create the friction to whip the whites and began whipping. We were using a manual whisk, which made things much more difficult, if you have an electric mixer this a definite advantage.
When the egg whites have tripled in volume and are becoming firm, slowly and intermittently add one cup of fine white sugar continually mixing in between.
Next we dolloped the mixture onto a baking sheet covered tray and formed the shape we wanted. If you want to make this easier you could draw a shape on the underside of the baking sheet to copy. We tried to get as much height as possible, to get more of that gooey center at the end. Then we put the meringue in the oven at 200 degrees F for an hour and a half. After that hour and a half turn the oven off and crack the door and leave to cool completely.
Whilst this was happening we whisked a small tub of pouring cream with some sugar (depending on taste), we used minimal sugar as I wanted a contrast between the sweet meringue and the cream. We also whisked in some vanilla extract.
We then went about decorating the meringue, Priya took full control of this part. As I love cream, I told Priya to slap it all on, don’t do this as we had a minor catastrophe with a small collapse of the meringue as the cream was too heavy.