To celebrate the season of love, this pavlova draws its influence and flavour profile from the exotic Persian love cake. Rosewater brings fragrant floral undertones to the marshmallowy pavlova and is perfectly complemented by the aromatic cardamom cream and slivered pistachios. Topped with fresh juicy figs and dotted with jewels of Turkish delight, this enchanting dessert is sure to win many hearts.
The recipe for this divine rosewater-kissed pavlova was created for and sponsored by Harris Farm Markets, my favourite supplier for all fresh produce, including these gorgeous ripe figs.
(1) To ensure the greatest volume when whisking your egg whites, ensure all cooking utensils are squeaky clean from grease, and that you use the freshest eggs possible, at room temperature. If you need to bring the eggs quickly to room temperature from the fridge, placing them uncracked in a small clean bowl of warm water will hasten the process.
(2) The actual process of making pavlova is fairly simple, but it needs a little patience and know-how to turn out just right. To ensure the pavlova is completely crisp when baked, avoid making them on humid or rainy days (or if your local climate is always humid or rainy, crank the air-conditioning up in the kitchen to ensure the air is dry when you’re baking). To avoid your pavlova browning and losing its lovely pearly-white tone, bake on the bottom shelf of your oven using a low heat. To ensure your pavlova doesn’t spread excessively when baked, the meringue must be whisked to very stiff peaks (you should be able to hold it upside down above your head and the meringue should not slide out of the bowl!). To prevent little bubbles all over the pavlova surface, ensure the sugar has completely dissolved in the egg white (it should not feel gritty when rubbed between your fingers), and don’t overbake it. Finally, to avoid a cracked or collapsed pavlova, allow a copious amount of time to cool down very slowly.
(3) The pavlova can be made in advance and will keep crisp in an airtight container at room temperature for 24 hours. After assembling the pavlova together with the cream and fruit, however, it should be served immediately as the moistness will quickly soften and degrade the quality of the meringue.Print
Persian Love Pavlova
To celebrate the season of love, this enchanting rosewater pavlova is topped with cardamom cream, fresh figs, Turkish delight and slivered pistachio nuts.
- 4 large egg whites, at room temperature
- 220g caster sugar, sifted
- Pinch cream of tarter
- 1⁄2 tsp cornflour, sifted
- 1⁄4 tsp white vinegar
- 1 tsp rosewater
- 150ml thickened cream
- 1 tbsp caster sugar
- 1⁄2 tsp ground cardamom
- 1⁄2 tsp vanilla paste
- 5 medium sized figs, halved
- 100g Turkish delight, chopped into small pieces
- Small handful toasted slivered pistachios
- Dried rose petals, if desired
- Pre-heat oven to 140°C (120°C fan-forced) and line a baking tray with baking paper. Trace an 18cm (7”) circle on baking paper, then flip paper over to avoid marking pavlova.
- Place egg whites and cream of tarter in a free standing mixer and whisk on medium speed until frothy.
- Slowly add caster sugar, teaspoon by teaspoon, while continuing to whisk (this process should take approximately 10-12 minutes).
- Turn mixer up to high speed and continue whisking until mixture transforms into glossy thick meringue and stiff peaks form (approximately 2 minutes). If you rub a little meringue between your fingers it should feel completely smooth, with no grittiness of undissolved sugar.
- Sprinkle sifted cornflour over meringue, then fold in along with vinegar and rosewater.
- Spoon meringue onto baking paper within the drawn 18cm (7”) circle, then use a palette knife to shape the sides of the pavlova and create a small nest in the middle.
- Place tray in oven on bottom shelf and turn the oven down to 130°C (110°C fan-forced). Bake for 90-100 minutes, then turn oven off without opening the oven door and leave pavlova in the oven for 4-6 hours to allow the pavlova to cool down slowly and prevent collapse.
- Gently whisk together cold cream, sugar, cardamom and vanilla to soft peaks.
- Spoon cream over pavlova, then decorate with fig halves, Turkish delight, slivered pistachios and rose petals. Serve immediately.
Makes a medium size pavlova and serves 4-6 people
Keywords: Cardamom, Fig, Meringue, Pavlova, Persian Love, Pistachio, Rosewater, Turkish delight