Pavlovas with Strawberries, Vanilla Cream, and Basil Coulis
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Wednesday, September 2, 2015

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Pavlovas with Strawberries, Vanilla Cream, and Basil Coulis

Kelly Mike - Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Ingredients

For the Meringues
  • 4 large egg whites, room temperature
  • 1 cup confectioner's sugar, divided into ¾ cup and ¼ cup
  • 1½ teaspoons cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon white vinegar
For the Vanilla Cream
  • ¾ cup chilled heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ½ vanilla bean, split lengthwise
For the Strawberry Coulis
  • ½ pint container strawberries, hulled
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
For the Basil Coulis
  • ⅓ cup packed fresh basil leaves
  • ½ cup light corn syrup or light agave syrup
For Garnish
  • 1 pint strawberries, halved, stems and leaves left on
  • ⅓ cup crushed raw pistachios

Instructions

To make the Meringues
  1. Position rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 325 F degrees.
  2. Trace six 2½-inch diameter circles on parchment paper, spacing apart about 2 inches. Invert paper onto baking sheet.
  3. In a large bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk, beat egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form, about 4 minutes.
  4. Gradually add ¾ cup sugar, beating until medium-firm peaks form, about 3 minutes.
  5. Mix remaining ¼ cup sugar and cornstarch in a small bowl. Gradually beat sugar-cornstarch mixture into meringue batter, continue beating until very stiff, about 2 minutes. Beat in vinegar for 1 minute. Total beating time should be around 10 minutes.
  6. Divide meringues equally among circles, mounding and filling the rounds completely.
  7. Bake meringues for 40 minutes.
  8. Turn oven off and keep meringues inside with the door closed for another 30 minutes.
  9. Open door slightly and let meringues cool in oven until almost completely dry in center, about 30 minutes longer.
  10. Can be made up to 3 days ahead. Cool completely and store in an airtight container at room temperature.
  11. To make the Vanilla Cream: Combine cream and sugar in medium bowl. Scrape in seeds from vanilla bean. Using electric mixer, beat cream until soft peaks form.
To make the Strawberry Coulis
  1. Purée strawberries and sugar in processor until smooth. Heat the purée over medium-low heat until syrup forms, about 3 minutes.
To make the Basil Coulis
  1. Blanch basil leaves in a small saucepan of boiling water for 30 seconds.
  2. Drain and transfer basil to bowl over ice to stop cooking. Squeeze out excess water from basil.
  3. Purée basil with corn or agave syrup in blender. Cover and chill at least 2 hours or overnight to allow flavours to develop.
  4. Bring basil coulis to room temperature. Strain syrup through a sieve before serving.
To assemble 
  1. Divide the vanilla cream and place in the center of each meringue disc.
  2. Top each with halved strawberries.
  3. Spoon strawberry coulis and basil coulis around the meringue circle and over the strawberries.
  4. Sprinkle with crushed pistachios. Serve immediately, or chill before serving.

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