Blood Orange Pavlova / by audrey gebhardt

Let’s talk about interactive food. Pavlova is one of my FAVORITE things to serve at a dinner party, because I get my guests to help me make it. I pre-make the meringue and the custard, and I pass the bowl of heavy cream around the table with a whisk until it’s whipped cream! I have very competitive friends and it often becomes a race of who’s arm gives out first.

Blood Orange Pavlova

This dessert is really special, always a showstopper and doesn’t leave your guests feeling weighed down by pounds of butter and flour.

The meringue can be made the day before, just leave it out on the counter uncovered. You can even make the custard the night before and leave it covered in the fridge!

As always, you can catch the video over HERE on my IGTV!

Blood Orange Pavlova

Blood Orange Pavlova
Serves 10-12

for the meringue:
5 egg whites
1 1/4 c sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 pinch salt
1 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch
1 1/2 tsp white vinegar

for the custard:
4 1/2 c whole milk
5 egg yolks
1/3 c cornstarch
1 c sugar
1 tsp salt
zest of two blood oranges
1 tsp vanilla

for the garnish:
2 c whipped cream
1 tsp vanilla
juice of two blood oranges
slices of two blood oranges

Make the custard:
Heat 4 cups of milk in a large saucepan over a medium flame until bubbling just around the edges of the pan.

Whisk together the cornstarch, sugar and salt. Whisk in the egg yolks and the remaining 1/2 c of milk.

When the milk is hot, quickly whisk in five ladles of milk into the egg mixture. Once that has warmed the eggs up a bit, whisk the whole mixture back into the milk in the saucepan.

Put the pan over a medium flame and whisking constantly, bring to a boil. Boil, constantly whisking, for 3-4 minutes until the custard thickens.

Remove from heat and stir in the blood orange zest and vanilla.

Cover directly with saran wrap and place in the fridge for at least 4 hours to cool down.

Make the meringue:
While the custard is cooling, preheat the oven to 250 and beat the five egg whites to stiff peaks in a large bowl.

Slowly beat in the 1 1/4 c sugar along with the vanilla and pinch of salt. Continue to beat for five minutes or so until the sugar is nearly dissolved (if you rub a bit between your fingers it shouldn’t feel too gritty). The meringue should be really thick and shiny!

Fold in the cornstarch and vinegar and form into a 10” circle on a parchment lined baking sheet.

Bake at 250 for an hour to an hour and a half, until it’s no longer sticky. Turn the oven off and open the door slightly and allow the entire thing to cool completely while it’s still in the oven.

To assemble:
Whip the very cold whipped cream until soft peaks form, then fold in the orange juice and vanilla.

Carefully place the meringue onto a large plate. Top with half of the custard and all of the whipped cream, garnish with blood orange slices.

I like to serve this in the middle of the table and just hand everybody their own fork!