17 December, 2014
Dark Chocolate Pavlova
Over the next week or so I’ll be documenting our Christmas Food Traditions, and I’m starting today with Pavlova. A few years ago I discovered the joy of mini pavlovas – they store in an airtight container at room temperature rather than taking up space in the fridge, and each one can have added to it whatever toppings the eater feels like!
On Valentines Day this year I discovered a lovely recipe for Dark Chocolate Pavlovas on Food Done Light website, of course we all make our own adjustments to recipes and this was no exception. In my version I don’t include the wine syrup and I don’t soak the strawberries in red wine – they are so good just fresh.
6 large egg whites
2 cups icing sugar
3 tbsp. unsweetened dark cocoa powder, sifted
1 tbsp. red wine
2 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped
Fresh strawberries, halved or quartered
Preheat oven to 175°C.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Decide if you want individual Pavlovas or one large one. For one large, draw a 9 inch circle on the paper with a pencil. If individual, draw a circle around a cup or bowl the size of the Pavlovas you want. Flip the parchment paper over so the pencil marks are on the bottom.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Then beat in the sugar a spoonful at a time until stiff peaks form. The meringue should start should look shiny.
Sprinkle the sifted cocoa powder, wine and chopped chocolate over the egg whites. Gently fold in the ingredients until thoroughly mixed.
Using a spoon gently drop dollops of meringue into each of the circles on the parchment paper. (I could not pipe them because the chopped chocolate would clog the piping bag).
Gently even out with a small spatula.
Put the meringues in the oven and immediately turn the oven down to 150°C. Bake for about 30 minutes to one hour and 15 minutes depending on the size. The Pavlovas should be crispy and dry on top. Press your finger gently past the crust and you should feel a squishy spring like texture.
Turn off the oven but leave the Pavlovas in there. Open the door slightly and cool completely.
To serve: Place Pavlovas on a plate and spoon strawberries and whipped cream over them
This will be on our table on Christmas Day, and possibly for a few days afterwards too – after all, pav and trifle for breakfast on Boxing Day is a Barnes tradition!