Irish Cream Pavlova

20 Feb 2013

I made this for Richard’s birthday about a fortnight ago. He is mad for meringue so I surprised him with a  special pavlova that he could have all to himself. Instead of topping the crunchy-on-the-outside-soft-on-the-inside bowl of sweet and light eggwhite delight with traditional fruit and berries, I decided to go with an Irish Cream whipped topping, and finished later with white chocolate curls scattered over the top before the big celebration. Meringue + Irish Cream + Chocolate. Let’s just say, it works.

I am in the USA at the moment finishing our taster piece for Small Green Fields with a team of very talented friends, most of which have strong Irish ancestory I have recently found…Shanahan? Quigley? McGuire? Is féidir linn! Stay tuned for more.

In the meantime, be extra kind to someone and make them a dreamy Irish Cream Pavlova for dessert or tea sometime soon…here’s the recipe

Perfect Irish Cream Pavlova

150ml egg whites (approximately 4 eggs)

220g/1 cup caster (superfine) sugar

 2 tablespoons cornflour (cornstarch), sifted

 2 teaspoons white vinegar

 250ml/ 1 cup single (pouring) cream

 2 tablespoons Irish Cream (Bailey’s or Coole Swan or use Shaina’s recipe for gorgeous homemade)

½ (or more to taste) bar of white chocolate, grated (shredded or curled) 

Preheat oven to 150°C (300°F). Place the egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer and whisk until stiff peaks form. Gradually add the sugar, whisking well, until the mixture is stiff and glossy. (really take your time with the sugar, one tablespoon at a time is best)

Add the cornflour and vinegar and whisk until just combined. Shape the mixture into an 18cm round on a baking tray lined with non-stick baking paper. Reduce oven to 120°C (250°F) and bake for 1 hour 20 minutes. Turn the oven off and allow the pavlova to cool completely in the oven. Whisk the cream with the Irish cream until soft peaks form. Spread over the pavlova,  sprinkle white chocolate over the top. Serve immediately. Serves 8–10.

Slan Abhaile,

Imen

Photo and Styling by Imen McDonnell 2013

 

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A Farmer’s Meringue

22 Dec 2011

Richard’s favourite Christmas dessert is a massive. sloppy meringue covered with loads of cream and fresh fruit. Pavlova, roulade…anything of the like, and he goes crazy for it. I finally got around to attempting meringues this week as a holiday treat ‘just for him’

{20. 12.11 text message conversation}

Farmer: Did you make them yet?

Me: Make what? I am whipping the meringues right now, can’t talk

Farmer: Yes, meringues

Me: Yes, meringues! Speak tonite

Farmer: Did they turn out good?

Me: You can try one tonite *nearly drops phone into bowl of stiff peaks of egg whites*

Farmer: Right so x *back to feeding cattle*

Me: x

They worked. A few cracks, but oh… so… softly-crunchy-melt-in-your-mouth-delicious.
He told me that if that is all he got for Christmas, he’d be one satisfied farmer.

Here’s the recipe. Very simple….just don’t overwhip and if you have a fan oven start at 140 and turn down to 130.

Farmer’s Meringue

Makes 4 Large “Farmer Size” or 8 Small Meringue Nests

2 Large eggs

4 oz/110 g caster (superfine) sugar

Preheat oven to 300F/150C /Gas Mark 2

Place the egg whites in a large bowl and, using an electric hand whisk on a low speed, begin whisking. Continue for about

2 minutes, until the whites are foamy, then switch the speed to medium and carry on whisking for 1 more minute.

Now turn the speed to high and continue whisking until the egg whites reach the stiff-peak stage.

Next, whisk the sugar in on fast speed, a little at a time (about a dessertspoon), until you have a stiff and glossy mixture.

Spoon 8 heaped dessertspoons of the mixture on to your baking sheet lined with parchment paper, spacing them evenly.

Then, using the back of the spoon or a small palette knife, hollow out the centres.

Don’t worry if they are not all the same shape – random and rocky is just right.

Next, place the baking sheet on the centre shelf of the oven, immediately reduce the heat to gas mark 1, 275°F (140°C) and leave them for 30 minutes.

After that, turn the oven off and leave the meringues to dry out in the warmth of the oven until it is completely cold (usually about 4 hours).

Serve topped with cream and fresh fruit or berries!

The winner of the beautiful book, A Taste of Cork, is Annetje Roodenburg!  Congratulations Annetje and thanks again to everyone else who left a lovely comment here. Annetje, please email me at imen.producer@ireland.com with your mailing/postal address.

Nollaig Shona Duit,

Imen

Photos and Styling by Imen McDonnell 2011 {Shot with Loftus lens Hipstamatic}

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