Summer Berry Pavlova

PREP TIME: 15mins


This brilliant summer dessert features a chewy, marshmallow meringue, which goes perfectly with start of the the organic stone fruit and berry season. A fabulous gluten-free dessert.

Serving Suggestion:

Change the fruit with what is in season.

Make one large pavlova : Serves 6

What you'll need:

Electric hand mixer or a stand mixer


  • 4 egg whites (see note)
  • 200g castor sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cornflour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar (lemon juice)
  • 300ml cream
  • 1 or 2 teaspoon icing sugar to taste
  • 400g mixed berries, I used strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, nectarines & plums


  1. Heat the oven to 140c and line a baking sheet with non-stick baking parchment.
  2. You can draw an 18-20cm diameter circle on the baking parchment to help you, but remembering to turn the parchment over to avoid pencil marks on your beautiful meringue.
  3. Put the egg whites in a clean bowl and whisk, using an electric whisk or stand mixer and whip to stiff peaks *
  4. Important step: Whisk in 4 tablespoons of caster sugar, 1 tablespoon at at time, making sure the mixture re-stiffens again after each addition, continue whisking by adding a few more tablespoons of caster sugar at a time and then by pouring in the remaining sugar in a steady stream.
  5. Add the cornflour, vanilla and wine vinegar/lemon juice and whisk brief, until just incorporated (no longer or mixture might collapse)
  6. Pile the meringue onto the prepared baking sheet and spread out into a circle. Make a shallow dip with the back of the metal spoon in the centre of the meringue mixture to accommodate the cream and fruit.
  7. Bake for about 1 hour or until the shell is firm to the touch and can be peeled off the parchment. Remove from the oven and leave to cool or switch off the oven leaving the pavlova in the oven to cool down naturally.
  8. Whisk the cream with the icing sugar in a large bowl until its just holding its shape, the softer the better, think cloud rather than stiff cream. Over whipped cream will turn to butter.
  9. Wash and dry your berries and cut according to your size preference.
  10. Pile the cream into the middle of the pavlova and decorate with fruit.

Kitchen Notes:

Egg whites: I normally have some egg whites left in the fridge and normally work on 1 egg white = 30g, so 4 egg whites will be 120g.

Always ensure a clean bowl when adding the egg whites. making sure there is no shells in the mixture or the whites will not whip to stiff peaks.

Stiff Peaks: to test whether your eggs have reached stiff peaks, you should be able to hold the bowl upside down with no movement of the egg white mixture.

When cooking with eggs the low temperature of the oven is really important and this is where an oven thermometer will be really handy.



Kitchen Story:

This recipe is based on a Leiths recipe during my chef training.

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