Chef Jason Roberts is a friend and colleague; we've worked together a number of times over the years and I am a big fan of his food and his devotion to living a healthy lifestyle, not to mention the impressive work he does for No Kid Hungry. You may have seen him on The Chew, The Rachael Ray Show, Food Network or Cooking Channel. Since I've had a few requests for gluten-free recipes, I felt it best to go to an expert. Jason lives gluten-free and his most recent cookbook is a tribute to that. This recipe is a Jason shared with me that I now make it whenever I need a light, yet elegant dessert.
JASON ROBERTS' CHOCOLATE PAVLOVA WITH FRESH CREAM AND DRUNKEN BERRIES
Both Australia and New Zealand claim the Pavlova as a national dish, and stories abound as to the history of its creation. Both countries do agree, however, that the dish was named after the famous Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova. Essentially, this dessert is a baked meringue that’s topped with fresh cream and fruit. I have kept this iconic dessert simple with the addition of chocolate and Berries. When it comes to decoration, however, look to seasonal fruit such as kiwifruit, Pomegranate, and passion fruit.
Makes 12 small portions. Note: The photo above was from an event- the Pavlovas were crumbled and served it in a glass for an elegant look.
4 egg whites
1⁄4 teaspoon cream of tartar
Pinch of salt
1⁄2 teaspoon white vinegar
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar
3 drops vanilla extract
2 heaping tablespoons dark cocoa powder
1 cup freshly whipped cream
Preheat the oven to 250°F (120°C). Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper.
Using an electric mixer or hand mixer on medium speed, beat the egg whites with cream of tartar and salt until they become thick and foamy.
Increase the speed to high, add the vinegar, and gradually add the granulated sugar in five separate batches, beating well between each addition. Continue beating until stiff peaks have formed and the sugar has dissolved. Sift in the cornstarch and confectioners’ sugar, then thoroughly fold in the vanilla.
Remove a cup’s worth of the meringue and put it in a clean bowl. Sift the cocoa powder over the meringue, mix it in thoroughly, and then carefully fold this mixture back into the white meringue. The goal is to keep some of the marbled effect in the meringue.
Using a tablespoon, scoop up a large spoonful of the meringue, and use a clean finger on your other hand to push the meringue onto a tray lined with foil or parchment paper. Repeat, leaving a 2-inch gap between all the meringues.
Place the meringues into the oven and bake them for 1 hour. Reduce the temperature to 160°F (70°C) and cook them for another 30–60 minutes or until they’re dry to the touch. Turn off the oven, leaving the meringues in the oven for at least another hour or even overnight.
To store the meringues, place them into an airtight container; they will stay perfectly fresh for 2–3 days.
To serve, place the meringues on a plate and top them with fresh whipped cream and a scattering of the drunken berries.
½ cup fresh raspberries
½ cup fresh blackberries
1 cup hulled and halved strawberries
½ cup Limoncello or lemon liqueur
¼ cup granulated sugar
Place the berries along with the sugar and alcohol into a bowl and toss lightly, allow to sit for ½ an hour before serving.