Tart red cherry compote with drizzled dark chocolate, and white chocolate shavings topped over a lightly sweetened, airy, merengue-like cake is the perfect summer treat.
I’ve been holding on to this pavlova recipe since before I left vacationing in South America and I am very excited to finally be able to share it with you today. As my second time making this dessert, I am in love! It’s light, airy, and can be topped with just about any fruit imaginable.
Before leaving to Ecuador, I was on a mission to make all sorts of summery desserts using a variety of fruits. One of which was cherries. Having only made one other cherry dessert in my past which used dried cherries (not fresh cherries), I fought my traumatic past of real cherries and tried one. Mind you, I’m talking about for the first time just 2 weeks ago! I really don’t know why I waited so long.
Tart cherries with melted dark chocolate and cherry compote over the lightly sweetened merengue-like cake was simply irresistible. No wonder why “black forest sponge cakes” have stuck around for so long. Cherries with chocolate is truly a great match. Then again, I don’t know what doesn’t taste good with chocolate added.
Not only does this pavlova taste great, I felt guilt free having a second piece. The merengue itself has zero fat! Yep, that’s right, the merengue is fat-free. No yolks, oil or even butter. Nada! It’s the perfect summer treat if you’re looking for something other than frozen desserts to keep you cool in the heat of this weather. If you’re looking for something different, definitely give this recipe a try and let me know how it turned out 🙂Print
- 5 egg whites, room temperature
- 1 cup + 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 1/2 cup fresh cherries
- 1/2 cup heavy cream or Cool Whip
- 1/2 cup chocolate sauce or ganache
- 1 ounce block dark chocolate
- 1 ounce block white chocolate
- Heat oven to 250 degrees F. Using a pen/pencil, trace around a 6-inch round baking pan over parchment paper. Flip parchment paper over onto a large cookie sheet. Place 2 butter knives on each end of the parchment paper to prevent the paper from curling from the heat; set aside.
- In a large clean, dry, greaseless bowl, use an electric mixer to beat egg whites on high until stiff peaks form.
- Gradually add 1 cup of sugar a few tablespoons at a time. Use a clean rubber spatula to scrape sides of bowl for thorough mixing. Continue beating on high until meringue appears glossy and when a sample is pinched between two fingers, no sugar granules are detected.
- Add cream of tartar and continue to beat for one minute.
- Using an angled spatula, place a small amount of meringue onto the parchment paper to form a ring around the traced circle. Gradually add the rest of the meringue and shape to your desired design. NOTE: Be sure there are no air bubbles as this may cause cracking.
- Bake for 1 hour. Do NOT open oven. Leave pavlova to cool in oven for 3 hours or more.
- Pit 1/2 cup cherries and place into a small saucepan with 2 tablespoons sugar and 1 tablespoon water. Heat on medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Mash cherries once they swell, heat for 2 more minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
- Whipped cream
- In a large chilled bowl, using an electric mixer beat heavy cream and 2 tablespoons of sugar until stiff peaks form; set aside to cool in fridge.
- Using a vegetable peeler, peel the sides of the chocolate blocks. Set aside in a cool dry area until needed. NOTE: do not store in fridge.
- Carefully remove parchment paper from the bottom of the pavlova and set onto a serving platter. Spoon whipped cream over the top of the pavlova. Garnish with whole cherries. Drizzle cherry compote and chocolate sauce/ganache. Evenly sprinkle chocolate shavings. ENJOY!