A couple of posts ago I mentioned a recent trip to Riverford Field Kitchen in Devon, where amongst other delights there was a beautifully light but deeply satisfying Mango Pavlova. Amidst the chaos of sunday lunch yesterday we decided to give it a go, so here’s our version:
300g caster sugar
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- Preheat oven to 180 C (fan oven)
- Beat the egg whites until soft peaks form, then add the sugar gradually, continue beating until shiny and stiff.
- Add the balsamic vinegar and gently fold through until thoroughly mixed.
- Put onto a large baking sheet or baking tray into a vaguely rectangular shape – don’t smooth over, leave the top fairly rough.
- Put in the oven and immediately turn the heat down to 150 C.
Cook for about 1 hour 10 minutes. The meringue will be ready when the edges are crisp but light pressure on top should suggest softness underneath.
- While the meringue is cooking, peel and chop 1 mango roughly. Add 1tsp sugar Puree with a stick blender and set aside in the fridge.
- When the meringue is cooked, turn off the oven, open the door and allow to cool (this prevents the meringue from cracking excessively).
- Whip the double cream and spoon onto the cooled meringue base evenly.
- Chop the other mango into 1cm cubes (or smaller), scatter over the cream and pour the reserved mango coulis over the top. Serve immediately.
– For beating egg whites use a glass, ceramic or a metal bowl ideally (or best of all, copper) – plastic bowls can harbour tiny droplets of oil which can stop the whites from beating correctly.
– The size and form of the meringue is up to you – ours was a rectangle, you could make a circle if you like. It’s also up to you whether you smooth over the top or leave it rough – the method above gives an ‘undulating landscape’ of meringue which results in thicker and thinner areas of cream and topping, and makes for an interesting contrast.
– Children may appreciate some additional sweetening in the mango coulis, so add another teaspoon of caster sugar to the mix.
– If you don’t allow it to cool in the oven (we didn’t, it was in the midst of cooking sunday lunch), it’s not a disaster, you’ll just get more cracking.
– While we’re being honest, we could also have made our meringue a bit thicker. The balance of flavours was perfect, but you can always afford more squishy meringue goodness…