Dessert — PAVLOVA (Hazelnut Gateau)

Compliments of the White Morph Hotel and Restaurant in Kaikoura, New Zealand, in approximately 1997. (The White Morf is a form of the Southern giant petrel bird.)

As uninitiated New Zealand citizens, touring the country, we stayed one night while on the South Island, in the White Morph Hotel, within sight of the amazing Kaikoura mountain range. A resident pod of Sperm Whales can be viewed from boats year-round. At the White Morf, we ordered our first ever Pavlova. It was exquisitely delicious, so I boldly asked the chef, Judy, for the recipe. This is the recipe as she hand wrote it for me on hotel stationery. The kindness of Kiwis has always impressed us.

Ingredients for the Gateau:

  • 1-1/4 cups Egg whites
  • 1-1/4 cups granulated Sugar
  • 1 pinch of Baking Powder
  • 1 pinch of Cream of Tartar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1 tsp white Vinegar
  • 1 tsp Cornflour
  • Hazelnuts, chopped

Ingredients for Decoration:

  • Dark Chocolate
  • Whipped Cream
  • Fresh Fruit, cut into chunks
  • Vanilla Ice Cream (optional)

Instructions for Making the Gateau:

  1. Beat Egg whites together with the Baking Powder and Cream of Tartar until light and stiff.
  2. Slowly beat in the Sugar, a Tablespoon at a time.
  3. When firm peaks form, beat in the Vanilla, Vinegar and Cornflour.
  4. Shape the mixture into two rounds on greaseproof paper on baking trays.
  5. Sprinkle a layer of chopped Hazelnuts onto each round and smooth over the top with a spatula.
  6. Preheat oven to 200° C (400° F).
  7. Put pans in the oven and turn the oven OFF.
  8. After 1-1/2 hours, the Pavlovas will be cooked. Judy leaves them in the oven overnight.
  9. Cool the cakes and turn them over onto two plates.
  10. Melt the Dark Chocolate and spread onto the cakes.

Decorate immediately before serving:

  1. Slice any fruit of choice onto the chocolate side of one of the cakes, and cover with 1 inch Whipped Cream.
  2. Place the other cake, Chocolate side down, on top of the Whipped Cream.
  3. Decorate the top of the cake with Whipped Cream and more Fresh Fruit.
  4. Serve with a scoop of Vanilla Ice Cream if you wish.

This is a Kiwi favorite recipe. However, the Aussies claim it as well.



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