Summer Coconut Pavlova with Almond Cream and Strawberry Sauce

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If you’re looking for a red, white, and blue something or other to bring to your Fourth of July picnic, look no further!

This dessert is a show stopper, and looks WAY more difficult than it is. Not to mention it looks a heck of a lot classier than so many 4th of July themed foods. You can be proud to add this to any spread, and I have made this on many other occasions and it gets rave reviews every time!

I went with strawberries and blueberries for this one, but you can use any red and blue fruit you want – red and black raspberries, pomegranate aerils would look extra fancy….

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Here’s what you need: (recipe adapted from here & here)

  • 4 large egg whites (@ room temp)
  • pinch of kosher salt
  • 3/4 C. sugar
  • 2 tsp. cornstarch
  • 1 tsp. white vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp. coconut extract
  • 1 lb of strawberries chopped (aka a normal container of strawberries you buy at the store)
    • reserve a few whole strawberries for the top
  • 1 pint of blueberries

Whipping cream:

  • 1 C. heavy whipping cream
  • 2-3 Tbsp. sugar (sweeten the cream to your liking)
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 5 drops of almond extract (a little goes a LONG way)

Strawberry Sauce:

  • a handful of chopped strawberries
  • a splash of water
  • 1/8 C. – 1/4 C. of sugar (depending on how big your handful of strawberries were)

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Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.

Beat the egg whites + pinch of salt on high speed until soft peaks form. Then add sugar in small increments, incorporating it fully before adding more until the meringue forms stiff, shiny peaks. Add the vanilla extract + coconut extract. By hand, fold in the cornstarch and vinegar with a rubber spatula.

Line your baking sheet with parchment paper or use a silpat mat. Spread the meringue with the rubber spatula in a circle about 9″ in diameter. Make the edges higher than the middle (think of it like the shallowest meringue soup bowl ever) so it can hold all the fruit, cream and juices. Mmmmmmm!

Bake the meringue for 60-75 minutes. Turn off the oven and let it cool fully while inside the closed oven! When it’s done it feels firm to the touch, and as it cools it crackles all over, leaving the inside nice and marshmallow-y!

While the meringue is baking, make your strawberry sauce. Take a handful of chopped strawberries, with the water and sugar and put it in a small saucepan. Bring it to a boil and then lower the heat so it simmers – you want the strawberries to soften and the sauce to thicken. Let it cool completely.

Next make your whipped cream. Whip the heavy whipping cream on high and add the 2-3 Tbsp. to taste. (remember, the strawberry sauce is very sweet, so you may not want the whipped cream very sweet too).

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It’s important to know that you must assemble this just before serving or it will get soggy after a few hours.

 

 

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Spread the whipped cream on the pavlova, followed by the strawberries + blueberries, then drizzled with the strawberry sauce. Adorn the top with the whole strawberries you saved! Voila!

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Get ready to hand out the recipe to everyone….they’re gonna want it!

What’s your favorite 4th of July food or dessert?

love & cupcakes,

Katie

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