I’m so behind on recipes. Summer is officially over and peaches are slowly leaving grocery stores shelves, and yet here we are with… Peaches and Cream Pavlovas! But who says pavlovas are strictly a summer recipe? If you can’t find peaches, there’s always berries and plums, and this can easily turn into a fall recipe.
The most important ingredient when making meringue is patience. Patience when beating the egg whites and slowly adding in the sugar – if you have masochist tendencies like me, you can even do it by hand! – then an even greater amount of patience when waiting for it to bake: it takes an hour in the oven and then at least two hours on top of that until they cool. And a very important tip here: don’t open the oven door!
The meringues will crack when in contact with cool air, so baking meringues not only takes patience, it also takes faith. Just pop them in the oven and have faith they’ll come out fully baked and sturdy, but not dry or over baked. I made these using yellow sugar, which is not really conventional, but I love the color it produces! You can use granulated sugar if you don’t have light brown/ yellow sugar.
Baking the peaches will make them extra juicy, making a perfect topping for our little pavlovas. When shaping the pavlova, I like keeping things simple, so a good old spoon will do! Don’t stress trying to make them perfect, just try to shape them all into similar sizes so they bake evenly.
Top meringues with baked peaches and whipped cream. And that’s it!
Peaches and Cream Pavlovas
2 egg whites
pinch of salt
3/4 cup light brown sugar or yellow sugar
1 tsp cornstarch
1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
3 tsp vanilla extract, divided
3 peaches, pitted and halved
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1 cup heavy cream
Prepare the meringue: heat oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine egg whites and salt. Beat at slow speed, slowly increasing to high. Continue until soft peaks begin to form.
Gradually add in 3/4 cup sugar, a tablespoon at a time, until stiff and shiny peaks form.
Add in cornstarch, vinegar, and vanilla, folding in gently.
Using a spoon, scoop a mound of meringue onto parchment paper, shaping into a small disk ( about 3 inches), smoothing the sides.
Place in oven, and immediately reduce the temperature to 300F. Bake 1 hour. Turn off heat, and allow meringue to cool completely in the oven. Don't open oven door.
Prepare the peach topping: preheat oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper. In a medium bowl, add peaches, 1 tsp vanilla, and 1/4 cup sugar and mix to combine. Arrange peaches cut-side up in a single layer on the baking sheet.
Bake peaches, uncovered, until the peaches are cooked through and fork-tender, 20 to 30 minutes
Make the whipped cream: add heavy cream and 1 tsp vanilla to a medium bowl. Using a hand mixer, whip the cream on medium-high until soft peaks form, about 3 minutes.
Top meringues with peaches and whipped cream. Serve.