Here we are again.
You & I and some blood oranges.
The season is so short, and it’s nearly impossible to get these out of season, I need to enjoy them now. It’s almost embarrassing how I’ve started to hoard them. Whole Foods had a sale this week and I left with three bags. I even bought a new fruit bowl to accommodate my citrus bounty. And if you came over to my house and commented on my large bowl of blood oranges, I may or may not gush over how gorgeous they are and offer to cut one open for you. In which you would probably respond with a slight look of shock and decline my offer and very quickly change the subject.
I made pavlovas as an edible fruit container of sorts. Don’t be intimidated by pavlovas, although they look difficult and impressive, they are actually very simple. As long as you make sure that not a single drop of fat (yolks or residual butter left over in a bowl) come in contact with the egg whites, they really don’t require much skill.
Miniature Pavlovas with Blood Orange Curd
Yield: 4 servings
For The Pavlovas
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tsp cornstarch
- 2 large egg whites, room temperature (reserve the yolks for the lemon curd)
- pinch of salt
- 1 tsp white vinegar
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
For The Curd:
- 2 tsp blood orange zest
- ½ cup fresh squeezed blood orange juice
- 1 tbs lemon juice
- 1/3 cup white sugar
- 2 tsp corn starch
- 1 whole eggs plus three yolks
- ¼ cup unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- Sliced fresh strawberries & whipped cream for serving, if desired
- Preheat oven to 275.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the sugar and the cornstarch.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer add the egg whites and pinch of salt. Beat on medium speed until soft peaks form.
- Turn mixer to high and slowly add the sugar mixture, continue to beat until peaks start to firm, about 1 to 2 minutes. Slowly add the vinegar and vanilla, beat until stiff peaks form and meringue is glossy.
- Cover a large baking sheet with parchment paper (or a Silpat). Spoon meringue onto to parchment in 4 equal sized “nests” making an indentation in each round with a spatula. Each nest should be about 2 inches across, 1 ½ inches high and have a well in the center to hold the curd.
- Place baking sheet in the oven and bake until the miniature pavlovas are dry and “crisp” on the outside, about 40 to 50 minutes (it’s OK to open the oven during cooking to peek at the pavlovas to make sure they aren’t cooking too quickly). Turn off the oven, open the oven door half way and allow the pavlovas to cool in the oven until room temperature before removing.
- Add the zest, blood orange juice, lemon juice, sugar, cornstarch, whole eggs and yolks to a bowl and whisk until well combined. Add the blood orange mixture to a pan over medium/low heat along with the butter. Whisk until thickened, about 10 minutes. Allow to cool to room temperature, refrigerate until ready to use (can be made up to 3 days in advance, store in an air tight container in the refrigerator until ready to use).
- Top each pavlova with curd (as well as berries and whipped cream, if desired) just before serving.