Pavlova is always the star of a Christmas meal in my opinion! This Pavlova Wreath is extra festive, with a unique South- East Asian twist!
This Pavlova Wreath recipe is one of the desserts you get if you order the My Food Bag Christmas Bag this year, except you’ll also get a specially made caramelised pineapple salsa, and an exceptionally delicious lime and lemongrass curd – those flavours along with the makrut lime and lychee is out of this world!
- Makrut lime is also known as kaffir lime. You can get freeze dried makrut lime powder and freeze dried lychees from Fresh As. Otherwise you could very finely chop some makrut lime leaves yourself, and use fresh or tinned lychees – the flavour is more intense with the freeze-dried options though!
- egg whites 6, at room temperature
- castor sugar 1½ cups
- corn flour 2 teaspoons (check label if eating gluten-free)
- white vinegar 1 teaspoon
- freeze-dried makrut lime powder 2 teaspoons (store-bought, optional)
- cream 1 cup
- vanilla essence or extract 1 teaspoon
- lemon curd ½ cup (store bought or see recipe below)
- freeze-dried lychees small handful, roughly crushed (store-bought)
- freeze-dried makrut lime powder ¼ teaspoon (store-bought)
- fresh mint leaves
Preheat oven to 130degC (do not use fan bake). Line an oven tray with baking paper and draw a 28-30cm circle on it using a dinner plate as a stencil. Draw another 8-10cm circle in the centre of the 30cm circle using a ramekin.
1. Place egg whites in a large, clean, dry bowl (be careful you don’t get any egg shell or yolk in the bowl) and beat with an electric beater on high, until stiff peaks form. Gradually add castor sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, while continuously beating. Once all sugar has been added, continue beating on high speed for 10 minutes, until sugar has dissolved and meringue mixture is thick and glossy. Beat in corn flour, vinegar and makrut lime powder (if using) for about 1 minute.
2. Using a large metal spoon, place large dollops of pavlova mixture onto baking paper (in between the two circles), to make a wreath shape. Level the top slightly to create a flatter surface to add the cream later.
3. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Without opening the oven door, turn off heat and leave pavlova to cool completely in the oven for 2 hours minimum (or overnight). Don’t worry if pavlova has cracks in it, this is normal (and a good sign of a crispy shell. It will also be covered with cream and curd later).
4. Once completely cool, you can store the pavlova in a large, dry, airtight container or on a large platter, lightly wrapped in cling film for 1-2 days.
5. In a bowl, whip cream and vanilla essence until soft peaks form.
To serve, spread vanilla cream over top of pavlova and drizzle with lemon curd. Sprinkle with freeze-dried lychees, makrut lime powder and mint leaves.
- If you don’t fancy making a pavlova wreath, spoon mixture inside the large circle on baking paper, making sure the base is well covered right to the edges. If preferred, you can smooth the top of the mixture to create a flat surface, but I prefer to leave it in dollops and swirls for a more rustic look.
- Makrut lime is also known as kaffir lime. You can get makrut lime powder and freeze dried lychees from Fresh As.
Lemon curd recipe
Whisk 4 egg yolks with ½ cup caster sugar in a medium-size glass or metal bowl, until well combined. Whisk in ½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice. Sit bowl above a pot of gently simmering water (or use a double boiler) and stir mixture continuously with a wooden spoon until mixture is a sauce consistency and has thickened enough to lightly coat the back of the wooden spoon, about 10 minutes. Set aside in the fridge to cool before using (it will thicken as it cools).