Recipe: Blackberry and fig pavlova with tahini cream
Soft, delicate meringue is crowned with velvety cream and a mound of seasonal fruit.
Pavlova is a showstopper dessert.
Soft, delicate meringue is crowned with velvety cream and a mound of seasonal fruit. The real theatre comes when you take the first slice and the ruby red juice from the berries oozes across the plate. Meringue is perceived as being somewhat difficult to make. It is not. All it needs is a little time, patience and a spotlessly clean and dry bowl and whisk.
- 3 large egg whites
- 75g light brown sugar
- 75g caster sugar
- 300g blackberries
- 2 figs
- Sprig mint
- 150ml double cream
- 1 lime
- 1 tbsp tahini
- 2 tbsp icing sugar
- Preheat the oven to 120c/ gas 1.
- Place the egg whites in a large bowl and, using an electric whisk, whip them until they have become stiff and fluffy. You should be able to turn the bowl upside down and the mixture will stay put.
- In a small bowl, weigh out the brown and caster sugar. Gradually, one dessert spoon at a time, begin to add the sugar to the eggs, beating constantly at a steady speed. Make sure the sugar is fully incorporated between each addition.
- When all the sugar has been added, you should be left with a thick, glossy, latte coloured meringue.
- Line a large baking tray with a sheet of baking paper. Use a little splodge of the meringue mixture to stick the paper to the tray to stop the paper flapping around in the oven.
- Spoon the meringue into the middle of the prepared baking tray and use a spatula or a spoon to smooth it into a rough circle.
- Place into the preheated oven and immediately turn the heat down to 100c/gas ½. Leave it in a low oven for 75 minutes until it has set on the sides but still feels squidgy in the middle.
- Turn off the oven and allow the meringue to cool completely in the oven.
- When ready to serve, whip the cream with the icing sugar until it just starts to hold its shape in soft peaks. Stir through the tahini.
- Dress the blackberries with the zest and juice of ½ lime (plus a tsp sugar if your berries are very sour, but you want a little tartness to balance with the meringue).
- Slice the figs into 8.
- When ready to serve, pile the cream on top of the meringue and spoon the fruit on top, pouring over the ruby red juices too.
- Serve immediately. Pavlova is best eaten on the day it’s made.