What’s an Australian summer festive season without a pav? No one does this classic dessert better than the ever-creative Bill Granger and here’s the delicious and colourful recipe from his latest book Australian Food (Murdoch Books). Give it a try over the holidays!
When we were first opening in Japan, we had a pop-up café for a weekend. There was to be a big press launch on the first day and we had painstakingly prepared our menu, including true Aussie pavlovas. Then we discovered the only oven in the café was a pizza oven. Pavlova in a pizza oven is quite a challenge – we were up until 2am, but the team pulled it out of a hat and everyone went crazy for the pav. You can fold a handful of chopped pistachios or chocolate chips into the meringue, depending on the season. I love the slight sour ness of the yoghurt cream that prevents this whole dish self-combusting into a sugar rush.
6 large egg whites
200g caster sugar
150g soft brown sugar
2 teaspoons lemon juice
500ml double cream
150g Greek yoghurt
2 mangoes, sliced
Pulp of 4 passionfruit
Lime zest or chopped pistachio nuts
To make the pavlova, preheat the oven to 160˚C. Line 2 large baking trays with baking paper.
Whisk the egg whites and a pinch of salt with electric beaters until soft peaks form. Mix the sugars together. With the beaters running, gradually add the sugar a spoonful at a time, beating until dissolved after each addition. Beat until all the sugar has been added and the mixture forms glossy stiff peaks. Beat in the lemon juice.
Use a large metal spoon to spoon 8 large even mounds of meringue onto the baking trays, leaving room for spreading. Make an indent in the centre of each.
Reduce the oven to 110˚C. Place the meringues in the oven and cook for 1 hour 30 minutes. Switch off the oven, open the door slightly and leave the meringues to cool completely in the oven.
For the yoghurt cream, beat the cream and yoghurt together briefly until thick.
Crack a hole in the top of each pavlova, spoon the yoghurt cream over the top and add sliced mango and passionfruit pulp. Scatter with lime zest or chopped pistachios to serve.
Images and text from Australian Food by Bill Granger, photography by Mikkel Vang. Murdoch Books RRP $49.99