A Tropical Pavlova with Calamansi Curd, ginger poached pears and grapes and grilled pineapple. A perfect ending to a year we will never forget.
It’s a time for reflection and at the end of the day I have to say I am grateful. Grateful for all of you that read and make the recipes. Grateful for healthy family near and far and I wish the same for you.
I have been planning this Tropical Pavlova for sometime now. Wanted to share something over the top that will take time to make and put together. Each component of this dessert is top notch. The only thing that failed for me anyway was putting the Pavlova shell on a plate. It shattered!! I know every 2020. My daughter was next to me when it happened. A choice had to be made. Do I freak out in front of her or go on and just brush it off? Brush it off I did, because really in the scheme of things it’s no big deal.
I could of made the shell again, but no it’s wasteful. It tastes amazing. So here we are me showing you this dessert with a broken shell and all. Very 2020. Let’s get to making this thing!
Super simple ingredients list:
4 Egg Whites and a Pinch of Salt – whip this together until super firm.
Super Fine Sugar – please use the super fine sugar, it will melt in to the egg whites better. Trust.
Cornflour and Vinegar – The chemical reaction between these two ingredients softens the proteins in the egg whites, making it more delicate, but more delightful to eat than a traditional meringue.
Vanilla – Gives it a nice sweet lingering flavor.
The key to the pavlova shell is to bake it low and long. The oven is between 250-300F and once you turn off the oven you prop the oven door and leave it too cool. This is a more Aussie style pavlova, where the outside is more toasted and the inside isn’t mushy, but nice and soft. I hate the pav’s that still taste like egg whites. Making it this way, however will result in a more delicate shell, so be prepared to brush it off if it breaks as you will be covering it with lots of goodies anyway.
The good thing about making a curd is that the yolks will not go to waste. We will use them in this next recipe.
4 Egg Yolks – Makes it nice and creamy.
Sugar – Cuts through the sour, but not so much.
Calamansi Juice – If you can’t find calamansi juice you can replace with any sour juice like lemon, passionfruit or orange.
Butter – This makes it nice and smooth and lush.
This is a homemade play on the canned fruit cocktail. The pears are simply cored and peeled and put in some water with ginger. Bring it up to a boil and leave to simmer until the pears are soft. Once they are soft, turn off the heat and throw in the grapes. Leave to cool fully.
The pavlova, calamansi curd and poached fruit should be made the night before to set and cool. Don’t try to rush and do it all in a day.
The next day when you are just about to put it all together, cut some fresh pineapple and put on the grill. Just brush it with some butter and cook for a minute on each side until you see it start to brown slightly. Leave to cool.
The Pavlova Shell is very sweet, so I actually don’t put any sugar in the whipped cream. To make I pour in a cup in a bowl with a teaspoon of vanilla and whip, whip, whip until nice and fluffy. But not stif! I find it’s better to do this by hand as it’s easier to see when it’s close to holding it’s shape without over beating it.
The build is super easy. Start by putting the Pavlova shell on a platter as carefully as you can. I have warned you already. It will break, but not to worry. The next step will fix it.
Now dollop on the whipped cream all over the top covering any imperfections. Follow it with some nice heavy spoonfuls of Calamansi Curd. The more the better. This Tropical Pavlova needs that sour tang.
To finish simply dot the fruit all over the top and if you wish garnish with some mint leaves. It will take you longer to make it than to eat it and I say that it is a super successful dessert.
Again thank you all for everything, reading, commenting, making and really just being around. Wishing you all good health and happiness in 2021.
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Make this the night before.
Pre-heat Oven to 250C
Beat the egg whites and salt together until they are stiff enought to form peaks. Add in the sugar slowly and beat it on high until the sugar has dissolved.
Fold in the cornflour, vinegar and vanilla until it has been fully mixed in.
Now pile the mixture on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Use a spoon or off set spatula to form it in to a circle.
Bake in the bottom of the oven for 1 hour and 30 minutes.
Leave to cool in the oven overnight with the oven of.
Put the yolks, sugar and juice in a small sauce pan. Turn the heat to medium low and stir with a whisk until it gets thick. This will take about 15 minutes. Once the mixture can start to hold it's shape, turn off the heat and mix in the butter. Cover with cling film making sure it touches the curd so it does not form a film while cooling. Leave to cool at room temperature then transfer to the fridge.
It's now the next day and we are going to prep the remaining ingreidnets before the build.
Heat up a grill pan to medium and add the butter. Cook the pineapple for 1 minute on each side until brown. Transfer to a plate and leave to cool.
Pour cream in bowl with a teaspoon of vanilla and whip, whip, whip until nice and fluffy but not stiff. It will take about 7 minutes by hand or if using a mixer about 2-3 minutes.
Transfer the pavlova shell to a plater carefully. Top with whipped cream, calamansi curd and fruit.
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