Monday, July 2, 2012

Patriotic Pavlova

We got home from our trip yesterday.  I am not sure why sitting in a car for hours on end makes me tired for days to come but I guess that's a lot of work for me.  Just sitting there.  Every once in a while turning my head to yell something at my kids in the backseat.  Not because we have a huge car and I have to yell for them to hear me but because we have a tiny car and everything they do starts to get on my nerves by the 11th hour.  The end of this trip marks the 8 billionth mile we have traveled since we got married.  And as of right now, going even to the grocery store seems too far.  (Although I did grudgingly go to the grocery store this afternoon, it was beyond ridiculous around here before that.)  

Another break from school has come and gone and today it was back to classes for the hubby.  It really went by in a flash, as it always does.  Some of our friends had a get together tonight to commemorate the start of another year.  They said to bring a side dish.  Doesn't dessert count as a side?  I really think it should also count as a main dish.  I have had this pavlova in my head since I saw this post the other day and knew if I made it for our family alone, I would eat it by myself.  

I have previously mentioned my love of pavlova.  And if you haven't tried it yet, I really don't know what you are waiting for.  I thought it would be an especially nice treat to bring because one of the guys can't have gluten.  (You really should have seen how excited he was when he found out it was gluten free.  It was worth it just for that.)  It is easy to make and everyone was impressed by it.  I felt a little guilty about how impressed they were knowing how little of my time it really took.  It does bake for 90 minutes and have to cool after that but it requires few ingredients and is simple to put together.  I understand your reservation, it has a weird name but you are just going to have to get over it!  

I am all about fresh fruit desserts right now, I can't seem to get enough.  The texture of the actual meringue is lovely.  It's light and pillowy with a slight crunch and then it melts in your mouth.  And not at all what everyone will expect you to bring. :)  It's traditionally shaped as a circle, but I opted for the rectangle since I had the flag theme going.  You can really put any kind of fruit you feel like on top, this is just what I used today.  Previously, I baked it at 200 for 90 minutes, turned off the oven and let it cool in the oven for 2 hours.  It seemed to crack less using that method and it stayed more white in color.  Today I was in more of a hurry and baked it at 225 for 90 minutes, then removed it from the oven to cool completely.  Either way works but if I have time, I will opt for the former.

Patriotic Pavlova
6 egg whites
1/4 + 1/8 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp vanilla
1 & 1/2 cups sugar

large container of cool whip
1/4 cup sugar
8 oz cream cheese

watermelon, cut into star shapes with cookie cutter.
strawberries (about 3/4 to 1 cup chopped)
blueberries (about 1 cup)

Preheat oven to 200 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Add egg whites, cream of tartar and vanilla to the bowl of your mixer.  Mix on medium speed until frothy and light.  Add sugar a little at at time until all combined.  Turn mixer speed to high and whip until stiff peaks form. (about 5-10 minutes)

Spread into desired shape on parchment paper.  The meringue should be about 1 1/2 to 2 inches thick.  My rectangle was about 9x13 inches.  Bake for 90 minutes, then turn off oven temp and allow to sit in the oven for 2 hours.  Remove and cool completely.

For topping:
Mix 1/4 cup sugar and cream cheese until smooth and combined.  Mix in Cool Whip and refrigerate about 20 minutes.  Spread onto the cool meringue.  

Top with chopped strawberries, watermelon and blueberries.  Serve immediately.  (Since it was a rectangle, we cut it into squares)

Now if only I could sleep for a week to recover from all that hard sitting and yelling work I have been doing. ;)  Oh and on top of that, I picked now to try and quit drinking Diet Coke.  Feel free to shoot me in the head.  Anyone?


  1. I agree! Sitting does make you exhausted!

    I love this cute patriotic dessert :)

  2. I never have tried Pavlova!! It looks amazing! Everytime I travel I end up exausted too, that's just how it its!!

  3. Love the star shapes! Very patriotic! Happy Fourth!


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