Chefs' Recipes

Bert's passionfruit and elderflower pavlova

A heavenly pavlova recipe by Jordan Toft, head chef at Bert's in Newport, Sydney.

By Jordan Toft
  • 30 mins preparation
  • 1 hr cooking plus cooling
  • Serves 6
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"White meringue, a soft centre and passionfruit; this dish needs no introduction," says Toft. "Elderflowers remind you it's spring, and the whole combination should signal an end to a great meal."

Ingredients

  • 80 ml (⅓ cup) pouring cream, whisked to soft peaks
  • Pulp from 6 passionfruit, to serve
  • Elderflowers (optional; see note) and lemon thyme leaves, to serve
Pavlova
  • 115 gm eggwhite (about 4 eggs)
  • 200 gm caster sugar
  • 1½ tbsp cornflour
  • ½ tsp cream of tartar
Passionfruit curd
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 35 gm caster sugar
  • 2 tbsp strained passionfruit juice (from about 2-3 passionfruit)
  • 150 gm cold unsalted butter, diced

Method

  • 1
    Preheat oven to 110°C. For pavlova, lightly grease a large oven tray and line with baking paper. Whisk eggwhite in an electric mixer to soft peaks (1-2 minutes), then gradually add sugar and whisk to firm peaks (5-7 minutes). Sift in cornflour and cream of tartar, and fold to combine. Place an oiled 7.5cm ring cutter (about 3cm high) on prepared tray and spoon in meringue until level with top, then lift cutter to remove. Clean and re-oil cutter and repeat to make 6 pavlovas, leaving at least 4cm between each (alternatively spoon meringue into rounds). Bake until firm and meringue starts to release from paper (55 minutes to 1 hour 5 minutes). Cool at room temperature.
  • 2
    Meanwhile, for passionfruit curd, whisk yolks, sugar and passionfruit juice in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (don't let bowl touch water) to combine, then stir continuously until thick and mixture reaches 70°C on a sugar thermometer (3-5 minutes). Remove from heat, stir in butter a few pieces at a time, occasionally returning to simmering water to warm and melt if needed. Cool.
  • 3
    Fold ⅓ cup curd through cream. Gently crack pavlova tops with the back of a spoon to make a cavity, then spoon in 1 tbsp curd followed by 2 tbsp cream mixture. Top with passionfruit pulp, elderflowers and thyme leaves to serve.

Notes

Elderflowers are available from select greengrocers. You'll need to order them ahead.
Drink suggestion: A medium sweet muscat, such as the 2015 vintage by Clos Bagatelle from Saint-Jean-de-Minervois in Languedoc, France. Drink suggestion by Adrian Filiuta.