Worthy like an elegant ballerina, this dessert is unique. Very famous in New Zealand and Australia, once you bite into a pavlova, your taste buds will start dancing ballet!
What is pavlova?
You won’t believe that this delicacy’s main ingredient is egg white! It helps to get a chewy and marshmallow like texture; it’s crunchy, it melts and it’s crispy! You will experience this three textures in one bite, how amazing! That isn’t all; pavlova loves to be topped with cream and fresh fruits. I love it, it is a perfect Spring dessert!
Today, you will discover a banoffee version of the pavlova. Basically, you will combine two desserts in one, it’s fantastic! Baking is so magical because you can play with flavors, shapes and texture to reach the perfect taste. Banoffee pie is a British dessert, that I discovered when I used to live in Manchester, U.K.; it’s a pie crust topped with cream bananas and caramel.
What are the ingredients?
I know you like to used ingredients that are simple! So you will need:
For the meringue:
- Egg whites
- Caster sugar
- Lemon juice
For the cream and topping:
- Mascarpone and whipped cream
- Some bananas
Egg whites— will have to be beaten until stiff peak, they are the base of the dessert; it will give crunch, texture and volume. Also, I suggest you to use room temperature whites because it will whip faster than cold ones.
Caster sugar— is the best option here, it will combine better with the egg. On top of sweetening the egg whites, sugar will also act as a stabilizer here. Without sugar, (and here I call you science people!) the proteins present in the egg will vanish and your meringue will not hold itself
Lemon juice— some recipes advise to use vinegar or cream of tartar. It will help the meringue to hold itself and stay firm. It will also help in the whipping process.
Cornstarch— will help the meringue to be fluffier.
Some recipes add vanilla extract, I did not as the caramel sauce and banana have rich flavors here.
The pavlova will be cooked in a low temperature, at 95ºC for 1h20.
Step by step!
I went the unconventional way this time and placed all the ingredients in one bowl! So, you place all the meringue ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer (if you wish to use a hand one, and practice your hand muscles!)
Before starting, make sure that the bowl where you will whip your eggs is grease free! Otherwise it will not whip properly; grab a napkin with some vinegar and clean your bowl before hand.
Start on a medium speed to foam and increase to high speed until stiff peak forms, stiff enough that you can hold the bowl over your head and the meringue won’t fall down! Try it you will see! Piping the meringue will be up to your creative minds! I used a star tip but it is not necessary as you can use a spoon and create small 10 to 20cm diameter pavlovas (I wanted to make individual ones but you can go for bigger diameter). It will really depend on your preferences and how big or small you the meringue to be.
Meringue does not requires any pan greasing, I used a silicon mat to pipe the meringues but you can also use parchment paper on a baking tray, it will do the job.
For the cream, mix all the ingredients until stiff. First, top the cooled pavlova with caramel. I had a homemade jar caramel in the fridge, so feel free to make your own. Add banana slices on the caramel and top with a generous dollop of cream. You can also sprinkle some shaved chocolate or cocoa powder for decoration. Do not worry, it does not have to be perfect! A pavlova has this seductive rustic look that is irresistible!
Did you like the recipe and made it? Please tag me @feirouzbakes on Instagram, I always love to hear from you and see your creations!
Preparation time: 20min
Baking time: 90min
Yield: 4-6 happy people!
For the meringue
- 125g egg whites (room temperature, see my notes above)
- 200g caster sugar
- 12g cornstarch
- 8g lemon juice
For the cream
- 200ml cold whipped cream (at least 30 percent fat)
- 100g mascarpone
- 1 tablespoon icing sugar
- (optional) 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Some caramel sauce, sliced fresh bananas and some cocoa powder/shaved chocolate.
Preheat the oven 95ºC and line a tray with parchment paper or a silicon mat
- In a grease free bowl, place all the meringue ingredients together. In the stand mixer, start with medium speed and gradually increase the speed to high after it becomes foamy.
- Refer to the video and images below to see how stiff the meringue should be before piping.
- Place the meringue in a piping bag or use a soon to create some meringue “nests”, there should be no hole in the middle so the toppings and cream wont leak.
- Bake for 1h20. Once baked, close the thermometer and leave the meringues to dry out for 20-30 min in the oven.
- Take the meringues out and remove them from the mat. The meringues should hold themselves and should be dry.
- Drizzle some caramel in the middle of each meringues, add some sliced bananas and a generous amount of cream. Sprinkle some cocoa powder or shaved chocolate for decoration.
- Grab a fork and… DIG IN!
Pavlova is best enjoyed after being garnished and to be honest it does not really freeze well. I advise you to eat them right away.
Once pavlova has cooled down, you can store it in the fridge for up to 2 days in an airtight container but without toppings or cream.
If you do not have lemon juice, you can replace the same quantity by cream of tartar or vinegar.