For a pavlova recipe with a difference, give this Indian inspired meringue a try. It’s sweet thanks to the use of mangos and the pavlova has a really nice crunch.
Seasonal Baking by Fiona Cairns (£15; W&N)
- For the meringue:
- 3 tsp cornflour
- 2 tsp white wine vinegar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 5 egg whites, at room temperature
- pinch of salt
- 250g caster sugar
- For the filling:
- 5 ripe Alphonso Mangoes
- 2 tbsp pistachios (or flaked almonds)
- 2 tsp milk
- a few stands of saffron
- 20 cardamom pods
- 160ml whipping cream
- 400g plain yoghurt
- 3 tsbp icing sugar, sifted
- edible flowers, freshly picked, dry and unsprayed
Preheat the oven to 190C, 375F, gas 5. Scatter the pistachio nuts for the filling on a baking tray and roast lightly for 3 or 4 minutes. Cool slightly, chop and set aside. Reduce the oven temperature to 140C, 275F, gas 1. Line a baking tray with baking parchment and draw a circle on it. Turn the paper over so the pencil mark is underneath.
To make the meringue, in a small bowl, mix the cornflour, vinegar and vanilla extract. In a very clean, dry, grease-free bowl, place the egg whites and salt. Using a food mixer or a bowl and a handheld electric whisk, whisk until soft peaks form, then continue to whisk, adding the sugar a large spoon at a time, alternating with the cornflour mix. Spoon the meringue into the circle on the tray, hollowing the centre and building the sides higher. Bake for one hour, then turn the oven off, leaving the meringue inside until cold. You can store it now in an airtight container for a few days.
Warm the milk in a small pan and add the saffron. Set aside. With the point of a knife, split the husk of each cardamom pod and empty the seeds into a mortar. Grind to a powder, then sift to remove the husks. In a bowl, whip the cream to soft peaks and fold in the yoghurt, cardamom, saffron milk and icing sugar.
When ready to serve, place the pavlova on a cake stand or plate. Spoon in the deliciously scented yoghurt cream. Peel, then cube or slice the mangos and arrange on top. Scatter over the roasted pistachios. Sprinkle the edible flowers across the top.