with Pudding & Starwberries

Jake made vanilla pudding, which raised the eternal dilemma: when you make a recipe that requires a number of egg yolks, what do you do with the whites? This time my answer is pavlova – marshmallowy meringue piled with whipped cream and fruit. I added a layer of the pudding to balance the sweetness level. You can top it with whatever you want, really. This recipe is super easy to make – it just takes a bit of time.

4 egg whites
1 c. castor sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
½ tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. cornstarch
2 c. vanilla pudding
1 ½ c. whipped cream
1 pint fresh strawberries, topped and sliced

Preheat the oven to 350° Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Place the egg whites into the bowl of a stand mixer and beat, using the whisk attachment, until you get soft peaks (about 4-6 minutes). Add the sugar and vanilla extract and continue beating until the mixture forms stiff glossy peaks (about 2-3 minutes). Remove the bowl from the mixer and gently fold in the cream of tartar and the cornstarch.

Pour the meringue mixture onto the baking sheet. Gently spread it to form an 8-inch disc with a well in the middle. Place the baking sheet in the oven and reduce heat to 200° Fahrenheit. Bake for an hour and a half, or until the pavlova is firm and no longer glossy (with a crisp outside). Turn off the oven, and allow the pavlova to cool inside, with the door propped slightly open.

Remove the tray from the oven and transfer the pavlova base to a serving plate. Pour the pudding into the well in the center of the base, spreading a little if necessary. Top with a layer of whipped cream and then with the sliced strawberries. Serve immediately.