The Pavlova is a meringue based dessert with a crispy crust and soft inside. No one knows who created the Pavlova but recipes began to appear after the Russian ballerina, Anna Pavlova( after whom the dessert is named), toured Australia and New Zealand in the late 20’s. Her visit was the chief event of 1926, it was said that “she does not dance; she soars as though on wings.” You get the sense that the Pavlova is a light and airy dessert.
Pavlova is made by beating eggs whites together until they achieve a very stiff consistency. Caster sugar, white vinegar, lemon juice, cornflour and sometimes vanilla essence is folded into the mixture. Pavlova has a crisp and crunchy outer shell and a soft marshmallow – like center- it is thought that the cornflour is responsible for the soft inside. When baking Pavlova, it is important to take caution since the cake can easily deflate- it should be left to cool in the oven before exposing it to air. When finished, it is usually decorated with whipped cream and fresh fruits including strawberries, kiwi, berries and passionfruit.
Pavlova is a delicious treat that can be enjoyed at any time of year, its no wonder that both Australia and New Zealand claim it as their national dish.