You put the lime (curd) in the coconut (meringue) and you get a tropical vacation masquerading as this dessert. Only ripe pineapple, papaya, mango, and kiwi need apply here: Since the fruit will be served uncooked, search for fruit at its peak of beauty and ripeness.
For the lime curd:
- 100g granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- Finely grated zest and juice of 2 limes
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1cm cubes and chilled
For the meringue:
- 25g cornflour
- 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 500g granulated sugar
- 8 egg whites, at room temperature
- 250ml cream, chilled
- 150g coconut cream, chilled
- 800g mixed pineapple, papaya, mango and kiwi, cut into 2.5cm pieces
- 15g toasted unsweetened flaked coconut
- Make the lime curd: In a small saucepan, whisk together the granulated sugar, the egg, three-quarters of the lime zest, and all the lime juice until smooth. Cook over a medium heat, stirring often, until thickened, about 8 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the butter until it has melted completely and the curd is smooth.
- Pour the lime curd through a fine-mesh strainer set over a small bowl. Stir in the remaining lime zest. Cover the curd with clingfilm and refrigerate until thickened, at least 2 hours and up to 1 week.
- Make the meringue: Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F/gas 4). Line a baking tray with baking paper and place a 23cm/9in round cake tin in the centre. Use a pencil to trace a circle around the outside of the tin onto the baking paper; remove the tin and flip over the parchment. The circle should still be visible.
- Stir together the cornflour, vinegar, vanilla, and salt in a small bowl until smooth.
- Combine the granulated sugar and egg whites in a large bowl. Using a handheld mixer, beat on medium-high speed until the egg whites hold soft peaks.
- Stir the cornflour mixture again to smooth it out, then add it to the egg whites. Beat until the egg whites are thick, glossy and hold stiff peaks. Scrape the meringue onto the baking paper into the centre of the circle. Use a spatula to shape the meringue into a disc, following the outline of the circle. Smooth the top and sides.
- Transfer the meringue to the oven and immediately reduce the oven temperature to 102°C (215°F/gas 1/4). Bake the meringue until it looks dry on the outside but is not browned at all, about 1 hour 15 minutes. Without opening the door, turn the oven off and let the meringue cool completely, at least 3 hours.
- Using two metal spatulas, gently remove the meringue from the baking paper and set it on a cake stand or serving plate.
- Combine the cream and coconut cream in a large bowl. Using a handheld mixer, beat on medium-high speed until the cream holds stiff peaks. Spoon the coconut whipped cream onto the centre of the meringue and spread it evenly over the top, leaving a 2.5cm/1in border.
- Arrange the fruit pieces all over the whipped cream. Stir the chilled lime curd again until smooth, then drizzle it all over the pavlova. Sprinkle the toasted coconut on top. Slice and serve within 30 minutes.
Recipe extracted from: Tasty: Ultimate (Ebury Press, £20.00)
Photography by Lauren Volo
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