One of my all-time favourite desserts, crispy, chewy meringue topped with clouds of cream, juicy raspberries and a dusting of dark chocolate – perfection on a plate!
6 large egg whites (size 7 eggs)
1½ cups caster sugar
3 tablespoons cocoa (I used Valrhona)
1 tablespoon cornflour
1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla paste or extract
½ cup whole skin-on roasted almonds, roughly chopped
300 ml cream, softly whipped
2 punnets fresh raspberries
½ cup sliced almonds, toasted
dark chocolate for grating
icing sugar for dusting
Grease a large, flat baking tray and line with baking paper.
Preheat the oven to 120˚C fan bake.
Whisk the egg whites to soft peaks then gradually add the sugar. Whisk until very thick and glossy and the sugar is fully dissolved. Undissolved sugar will cause the meringue to weep.
Sift the cocoa, cornflour and nutmeg together over the top of the meringue then add the lemon juice, vanilla and the almonds. Using a large metal spoon, gently fold everything together.
Place 8 large spoonfuls of the meringue on the tray, spacing them 4cm apart and keeping the meringue piled high rather than spreading it flat.
Bake for 1¼ hours until the outside is crisp while the centres are still a little soft and they will easily lift off the baking paper. Turn the oven off and leave the pavlovas to cool completely with the door slightly ajar.
To assemble: Place the pavlovas on serving plates and spoon on the cream. Top with the raspberries and almonds then grate over the chocolate and a dusting of icing sugar. Makes 8 generously-sized pavlovas
Don’t worry if the pavolvas have cracks when cooked. This is normal and they’re not meant to be perfect.
Pantry note: Whole, skin-on roasted almonds are available in the loose bins section at supermarkets.