I hope everyone had a great Christmas. I can’t believe the big day is over! Still, I have a few more days of R&R before returning to work. I need it to recover from the shock of making Christmas dinner this year. Only the second time I have done it, but I was a tad more organised than last and made lists of everything! Everything went well apart from my garlic infused sprouts, which I loved, but the others didn’t!
I wanted to share with you the dessert I made. We usually go for trifle, but we all fancied something a little different this year. I know that mum and Disneyboi love chocolate and raspberries together so that was where my inspiration began.
And the result was layers of chocolate flavoured and flecked chewy meringue, with layers of whipped cream and layers of raspberries! It was delicious and simple. That’s the key to Christmas day dessert I think - simple yet delicious. Time is precious on the day.
I made the pavlova discs a few days earlier and they kept well in an airtight container. So I all I needed to do was whip the cream and spoon on the rasps. I used frozen rasps (defrosted of course) as they tend to leak more juice, perfect for such a dessert.
I don’t have many pics of the pudding as it was assembled just as I was about to serve. And this couldn’t be layered in advance, the cream will eventually make the meringue soggy if it sits for too long, so it really is best eaten within a few hours of making.
6 large egg whites, room temperature
¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
250 grams of caster sugar
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cornflour
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
50 grams dark chocolate chopped (70% cocoa solid min)
Adapted from Joy of Baking
600 ml double cream
700 grams frozen raspberries, thawed
Preheat the oven to 180C. Line two large cookie sheets with greaseproof paper and draw two circles on each sheet of paper, about 6” in diameter. Use a plate or upturned bowl as a template. Flip the paper over so your piped meringue doesn’t come into contact with the pencil.
In a mixer, beat the egg whites until frothy. Add the cream of tartar and once the mix holds soft peaks, continue beating adding the sugar one tablespoon at a time. Beat until the mix holds stiff peaks. At this stage, add the vanilla and vinegar and fold through with a spatula. Sift over the cornflour and cocoa powder and fold this through until the cocoa has incorporated fully. Fold in the chopped chocolate.
Either with a piping bag with a wide nozzle, or with a spoon fill the four circle templates with the chocolate meringue mix. If using a piping bag, spiral the chocolate until around the circle.
Place the cookie sheets into the oven for 1 and ¼ hours. When the time is up, turn off the heat and leave the baked meringue discs until they have cooled completely (I left mine overnight). Carefully peel the discs from the greaseproof paper and store in airtight containers until ready to assemble the pavlova layers.
To assemble, beat the cream until it is stiff, but spreadable. Place one meringue disc on your serving plate and spoon on one quarter of the cream and carefully spread out to the edges. Spoon a quarter of the rasps on top of this. Repeat this process, until you finish with a layer of cream and rasps. And it’s as simple as that.
The meringue tastes chocolaty, is crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside. The folded in dark chocolate holds it’s shape and is a nice added bite in the meringue. The tartness of the berries goes well with the sweetness and the cream is pure indulgence. If you make, enjoy, as we did!