Servings: 8 serves
- 250 g fresh cherries pitted, plus extra to serve
- 50 g caster sugar
- 20 g lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 270 g white sugar
- 60 g brown sugar
- 8 egg whites room temperature
- 1/2 tsp cream or tartar
- 1 tsp white vinegar
- 1 tsp natural vanilla extract
- 1 tbsp cocoa powder sifted, plus extra for dusting
- 2 tsp freeze-dried cherry powder (optional - see Tips)
- 800 g thickened cream
- 500 g fresh mixed berries
- 4 sprigs fresh mint leaves
- Place cherries, sugar, lemon juice and cinnamon into mixing bowl and cook 6 min/100°C/speed 2, then blend 1 min/speed 4-10, increasing speed gradually from speed 4 to speed 10. Transfer into a bowl and set aside. Clean and dry mixing bowl.
- Preheat oven to 150°C. Line 3 large baking trays with baking paper and set aside.
- Place sugars into mixing bowl and mill 10 sec/speed 9. Transfer into a separate bowl and set aside. Thoroughly clean and dry mixing bowl.
- Insert butterfly whisk. Place egg whites and cream of tartar into mixing bowl and whip 4-6 min/37°C/speed 3.5, without measuring cup, until very stiff peaks form.
- Mix 4 min/37°C/speed 3, slowly adding reserved sugar (1 teaspoon at a time), vinegar and vanilla through hole in mixing bowl lid. Mixture should be glossy and smooth. Remove butterfly whisk.
- Divide meringue mixture evenly between 3 bowls. Add 2 tablespoons of the reserved cherry syrup to 1 bowl and gently combine using a metal spoon, taking care not to remove air from mixture. Add cocoa powder to another bowl, and gently swirl through to create a marbled effect. Do not add anything to last bowl of egg whites.
- Using a piping bag with a round nozzle (1 cm), pipe each mixture into approx. 30 small circles (approx. 4 cm diameter) onto the prepared trays. Using a fine-mesh sieve, dust cherry meringues with freeze-dried cherry powder (optional) and dust chocolate meringues with extra cocoa powder.
- Place trays into oven, reduce temperature to 110°C and bake for 1 hour (110°C). Turn off oven and leave meringues to cool completely with oven door shut (approx. 2 hours). Clean
and dry mixing bowl and butterfly whisk.
- Insert butterfly whisk. Place cream into mixing bowl and whip 45 sec/speed 3.5, or until soft peaks form. Remove butterfly whisk.
- Using 2-3 serving platters or cake stands, dot whipped cream onto platters in a circular pattern and arrange meringues, alternating flavours, on top of cream (using cream to secure meringues). Build pavlova towers by dotting cream onto meringues and stacking meringues in a vertical circular pattern. Fill any gaps between meringues with whipped cream, berries and mint leaves. Serve with extra cherries and cherry syrup.
- Frozen, thawed cherries can be used when fresh are not available.
- Freeze-dried fruit powders can be found at some health food stores.
- All components (including meringues and whipped cream) can be premade and placed into sealed containers and assembled just before serving.