This is the first time I’ve actually managed to take part in ‘We should Cocoa’ challenge run by Choclette at Chocolate Log Blog and Chele at Choclate Teapot You can read all about the challenge HERE, but basically you have to make something with chocolate or cocoa and a ‘special’ ingredient chosen by the host.
I was making pastry today for a quiche and the recipe uses two egg yolks, so I had two egg whites left. I am renowned for leaving egg whites in the bowl in the back of the fridge to use ‘later’. Of course, later rarely comes and I end up throwing them out. I had half a punnet of strawberries left from the weekend, so immediately thought I could make meringues, or even better some meringue nests or mini pavlovas. Then I was struck by inspiration…..I have a recipe for chocolate pavlova, I’ve made it before several times and it is fabulous. I could make that and top it with greek yogurt and strawberries. Can you tell how excited I was?
It’s funny how these things work out, when I did my Random Recipe for Belleau Kitchen, I used the book ‘Seasonal Cooking‘ by Claire Macdonald. I haven’t cooked anything from it for ages. This recipe is also by Claire Macdonald and it’s from ‘More Seasonal Cooking’ – the sequel!
So how do you do this? Claire makes a huge pavlova but here is what I did:
For the Pavlova
2 large egg whites
100g caster sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
1 tbsp cocoa powder (I used Green and Blacks), seived
Line a baking tin with baking paper. Whisk the egg whites until stiff. Then, still whisking gradually incorporate the caster, a spoonful at a time, until the meringue mixture is very thick. Measure in the vanilla essence and, with a large metal spoon, quickly and thoroughly fold the sieved cocoa into the meringue – watch out for little pockets of cocoa.
Pour and scrape this mixture onto the lined baking tray either in a single round or individual nests.
Bake in a moderate oven 350F/180C/Gas 4/for 2 minutes then lower the temperature to 200F/110C/Gas 1/2 and cook for a further hour. Take the pavlova out of the oven and leave to cool.
Claire fills her pavlova with whipped double cream mixed with grated dark chocolate – it is divine! But that’s not what I made, lets get back to the strawberries.
I read Hugh Fearnly-Whittingstall in the Guardian magazine at the weekend, he as mascerating strawberries in lemon juice and caster sugar, so I did that with my strawberries – very good too. I didn’t have any cream, but it is rare that I don’t have a tub of Greek Yogurt in the fridge, so I dolloped that on the pavlova and topped with strawberries and grated chocolate.
Pretty impressive huh? I even impressed myself and was really pleased to rediscover this recipe, it’s so easy and completely delicious, enjoy!