This apple and blackberry pavlova is the perfect autumnal pudding and although it looks very impressive, it’s actually just a few simple steps. Forage for the apples and blackberries when ripe, freezing any excess after washing and/or chopping so you can make this pudding throughout winter.
4 medium apples, washed,
2-3 handfuls blackberries, washed
Zest of a lemon
Juice of a lemon
Pinch of cinnamon (optional)
4 large free-range egg whites, room temperature
225g caster sugar, sieved
1tbsp cornstarch, sieved
1tbsp good quality vanilla extract
200ml double cream
1tbsp caster sugar
- Preheat your oven to 150C/130C fan/Gas 2.
- Place a cake tin (around 10in in diameter) on a sheet of baking parchment and draw around it.
- Peel, core and slice the apples, placing them on a baking tray lined with parchment paper
- Mix 1tbsp honey and the zest and juice of a lemon and drizzle this on top of the apples.
- Scatter the blackberries on top, sprinkling a little cinnamon if desired and set aside.
- Separate the eggs by passing the yolk back and forth between the two egg shell halves, or by running the egg between your fingers, catching the yolk. Collect the egg whites one by one so if you get a bad egg (uncommon but not unheard of) the other egg whites won’t be spoiled.
- Put the egg whites in a very clean bowl and whisk until stiff but not dry. No need for a fancy mixer, a hand mixer will work perfectly. They are ready when you can turn the bowl upside down and the whites don’t move.
- Whisk a teaspoon of sugar in at a time, leaving a few seconds between each addition. This allows the meringue to build volume whilst becoming stiff and shiny.
- When all the sugar is added, whisk in the cornflour and vanilla extract.
- Put the baking parchment drawn side down on a large baking sheet, using a little meringue in each corner as ‘glue’ if needed.
- Resist the temptation to eat the meringue straight out of the bowl and gently spoon the meringue onto the parchment, using the circle as a guide. Use a spoon or a spatula to create a nest, with soft peaks at the edges and a shallow well in the centre.
- Place the fruit on the top oven shelf and the meringue on the middle shelf and bake for an hour until very lightly coloured. If the meringue is browning too quickly, reduce the oven temperature.
- Turn the oven off and leave for a further hour.
- Remove the fruit and meringue and leave them to cool completely.
- Gently whip the cream with a tbsp of caster sugar until softly whipped.
- To assemble, spoon the cream into the centre of the meringue, then top with the roasted fruit. Dust with icing sugar right before serving if desired.
- Serve as soon as possible, but within two hours at most and enjoy.
Top tip: If preferred, this recipe can also make an autumnal Eton mess, simply double the cream mixture, crumble the meringue and combine both with the fruit.
Blog written by Beth Bracewell