4th of July Berry Pavlova - Gluten Free!

Pavlovas may be a favorite Down Under, but that’s no reason they can’t join the festivities here in America on 4th of July.  These meringues bursting with ripe Oregon berries are a great way to make a showstopping dessert centerpiece that’s naturally gluten free.

Serves:              12           

Active Time:   30 minutes

Total Time:      2 hours, 30 minutes

Ingredients

Honey Berry Meringues

1 1/2 cups Queen’s Bounty Blackberry honey

6 egg whites, room temperature

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 teaspoons corn starch

1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

Optional: ¼ cup strawberry jam + ¼ cup blackberry jam

Honey Lemon Curd

1/2 cup Queen’s Bounty Blackberry honey

2/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice strained

1 tablespoon lemon zest

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

Whipped Cream

2 cups heavy whipping cream

2 tablespoons sugar

Berry Topping

¾ cup fresh blackberries

¾ cup fresh blueberries

¾ cup fresh raspberries

¾ cup fresh strawberries

Mint sprigs

Instructions

Prepare your tools

Remove the bowl from your stand mixer and place it in the refrigerator or freezer so it will be cold when it comes time to whip the egg whites.  Pre-heat the oven to 300 F.  Draw two 9” circles on  parchment paper each set in a rimmed baking sheet.

Make Honey Meringues

In a medium-sized bowl, combine the egg whites, honey, vanilla, and salt. Fill a medium-sized pot halfway with a few inches water and heat until the water just reaches boiling.  Then, set the bowl with the egg white mixture over the pot whisk the egg whites and honey together, continuing to whisk for about 3 minutes, or until the egg whites have become white and frothy.

Pull the cold mixing bowl from the refrigerator and pour the egg white mixture into the cold bowl and begin mixing on high with the whisk attachment to the stand mixer.  When soft peaks begin to form, add the corn starch and lemon juice, distributing well. Continue to whisk until the mixture is shiny and with stiff peaks.

Pipe or scoop spoonfuls of the meringue onto the circles marked on the parchment paper.  Use a spatula to spread meringue to edges of circles if needed. Optional: brush top of one meringue with strawberry jam, creating swirls.  Brush top of other meringue with blackberry jam.

Bake about 1 hour, or until dry to the touch. Turn the oven off, open oven door slightly, and let the meringues cool completely in the oven, about 1 hour.

Make Honey Lemon Curd

Heat lemon juice, zest and honey over medium heat in a small pot, stirring frequently, until honey is dissolved and well mixed. 

In a separate bowl, whisk the two eggs well.  Then, slowly incorporate the lemon honey mixture into the eggs, whisking all together constantly.  Whisk for about a minute. 

Pour egg, honey, lemon mixture back into pot through a fine mesh strainer.  Whisk constantly while heating over medium low for 5 to 7 minutes.  When the mixture reaches a simmer, add the vanilla, stir to incorporate, and remove it from the heat.

Cover and refrigerate the curd for at least an hour until set.

Make Whipped Cream

Place a metal mixing bowl and metal whisk into the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes.

Place the sugar into the mixing bowl and add the whipping cream. Whisk just until the cream reaches stiff peaks. Refrigerate until pavolova is ready for assembly.

Assemble Pavlova

Place one of the meringues on a cake platter.  Spread the meringue with half of the lemon curd, and then spread with half of the whipped cream. Repeat with remaining meringue, placing flat end up.  Top with lemon curd, and whipped cream.  Arrange berries artfully atop the pavlova.  Serve immediately.

Jessica Jones