Fruit Pavlova Meringue with a crisp outer shell and billowy soft centre, topped with whipped cream, toffee sauce and roasted plums and figs. This is sure to satisfy any meringue lovers cravings
6 eggs whites
440g (2 cups) caster sugar
1 teaspoon lemon juice or white vinegar
For toffee sauce:
55g (1/4 cup) unsalted butter
60g (1/4 cup) sugar
60ml (1/4 cup) double cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
360ml (1 1/2 cups) whipping cream
4 plums, cut in half and de-stoned
3 figs, quartered
Couple of springs of thyme for decoration, optional
For the meringue
- Heat your oven to 140C (275F). Line a baking tray with parchment paper and trace a circle 20cm in diameter. (This circle should be smaller than the plate or cake stand that you are serving your pavlova on.) Turn the parchment paper over so that the pen/pencil line is underneath.
- Using either a stand mixer or a handheld electric beater, beat your egg whites in a large clean bowl on low speed for 3 minutes until they are firm.
- Turn the mixer up to medium speed and whilst whisking, add the caster sugar one spoonful at a time. (In between each spoon whisk for 15 seconds before adding the next spoonful). Once all the sugar is added, continue whisking for 6 more minutes.
- Then add the lemon juice or white vinegar and whisk for another 4 minutes. By now the egg white mixture should be thick and glossy and the sugar should be fully incorporated. If you rub a bit of mixture between your thumb and finger, there should be no grit as the sugar has fully blended. If there is then continuing whipping for a couple more minutes.
- Scoop the meringue mixture onto your lined backing tray into the circle that you’ve drawn. Then spread out the meringue with a back of a spoon or spatular to create a large meringue nest with soft peaks rising all around.
- Place the baking tray in the centre of the oven and immediately reduce the oven temperature to 110C (230F) and bake for 2 1/2 hours. The turn the oven off and leave in the oven for a minimum of 2 hours (preferably over-night), to cool completely.
- 1 hour before you are ready to serve. For the roasted plums: Pre-heat oven to 180C. Cut plums in half and de-stone. Place on a baking tray, lined with baking paper, cut side up. Brush with butter and sprinkle with sugar. Bake in the oven for 15 mins or until juices run off. Remove from the oven and leave to cool.
For the toffee sauce
- Place sugar and butter in a medium saucepan on medium heat. Cook and stir until mixture turns a deep amber colour. Carefully pour in the double cream and vanilla, be careful as the mixture will bubble, stir continuously until heated and sauce is thickened and coats the back of the spoon. Remove from the heat and pour into a bowl and set aside to cool.
- With electric beaters or by hand, whip the whipping cream in a medium bowl, until soft peaks form and refrigerate until ready to assemble.
- Spoon the cream onto the centre of the meringue, drizzle with toffee sauce and scoop on roasted plums and figs. Sprinkle with springs of thyme. And enjoy!
To store the pavlova:
The meringue base can be made a couple of days before hand and stored in an airtight container or wrapped several times in cling wrap. Don’t refrigerate- It can be left out at room temperature. Only decorate with your cream, curd or fruit just before serving. These accompaniments contain moisture and will bring down the structure of the meringue if left on top for an extended amount of time. It may taste great, but the meringue will have lost its crispy outer shell.
Keywords: Fruit pavlova, meringue, roasted plums, how to make a pavlova, pavlova tips