Who said that Valentine's day has to be about chocolate? I think that a beautiful white Pavlova with bright red cranberry sauce is as Valentine's day worthy as a box of your favorite chocolate. But then again, I've loved meringue desserts since childhood.
Classic Pavlova is served topped with whipped cream and garnished with fresh fruits. I didn't not use any whipped cream but feel free to add it. As for fruits, I wanted something tangy to balance meringues' sweetness and cranberries worked perfectly.
What you need:
(for 6 Pavlovas)
- 3 egg whites (at room temperature)
- 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
- 3/4 cups sugar
- 3/4 tsp vanilla extract
- 3/4 tbsp cornstarch
- pinch of salt
easy cranberry sauce :
- 1 cup whole fresh or frozen cranberries
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2-3 cups water
What to do:
- Preheat the oven to 250. In a small bowl mix sugar and cornstarch.
- In a large bowl whip egg whites, cream of tartar, and salt using an electical blender. Begin at low speed and increase speed to medium/high over 3-5 minutes (or until you can see soft peaks forming when the whisk is lifted).
- Gradually add sugar/starch mix, increasing speed to high. 2-3 minutes after pour in the vanilla extract. Continue whipping until the mix becomes glossy and you see hard peaks forming when the whisk is lifted.
- Spoon meringue onto the baking sheet, lined with parchement paper. The mix should make about 6 medium-sized portions. Lightly flatten the top of the meringue to make an indentation that would hold sauce and whipped cream.
- Place the baking sheet into the oven and bake for 40-60 minutes. Meringue should stay white, crispy on top, and not cracked.
- Remove meringue from the cooking sheet and cool on a wire rack.
- In a medium-sized pot bring water, sugar and cranberries to boil.
- Cook for 5-10 minutes, until cranberries popped. If you want a thicker sauce, mash some of the berries with a fork.
- Cool sauce before serving. Taste and adjust sugar.
- Place one meringue onto a plate and top with cranberry sauce. If your meringue do not have an indentation and look like mine on the picture above - carefully cut off the top of meringue to create an opening that would hold whipped cream and sauce.