The Perfect Pavlova

The pavlova. A delightfully light and sweet dessert made from a crisp meringue base topped with cream and fruit is a true kiwi treat.

As the story goes, this dessert was created as a tribute to the famous Russian Ballerina Anna Pavlova who toured New Zealand and Australia in 1926. Both Australia and New Zealand hotly debate who invented this tasty dessert, but we believe it is a true kiwi dish through and through.

Here's how to make the perfect pavlova.


6 egg whites (at room temperature)

2 cups caster sugar

1 tsp vanilla essence

1 tsp white wine vinegar

2 tsp cornflour

200ml cream, whipped

Fruit for decoration


1. Preheat the oven to 110ºC bake (not fan bake).

2. Line a baking tray with baking paper.

3. In a large metal, ceramic or glass bowl (not plastic), beat the egg whites until soft peaks form.

4. Continue beating while adding the caster sugar a quarter of a cup at a time. The mixture should get glossier and thicker with each addition and this should take at least 10 minutes. Beat in the vanilla, vinegar and cornflour.

5. Spoon mixture out onto the prepared tray into a dinner plate sized mound.

6. Bake for approximately 1 1/2 hours, until dry and crisp and it lifts easily off the baking paper. Turn the oven off and leave the pavlova for at least an hour before removing from the oven. Finish cooling on a wire rack.

7. When completely cool, place on a serving plate, swirl the top with the whipped cream and decorate with sliced or chopped fruit of your choice.

Recipe credit