The US High Bush Blueberry Council challenged me to make a blueberry recipe for Christmas. Have been intrigued with the idea of making a Pavlova for a very long time because of my love for meringue cookies at Christmas time so I thought–how about adding some lovely blueberries and one of my favorite holiday treats, Meyer lemon to the mix–my wonderful friends from the West and South send me them in the mail–that means the world to me. This is an impressive yet very very easy dessert that you can make ahead of time and assemble when you are ready to serve. Although it takes some time, it is not active time so you can get a lot of other holiday “business” taken care of while it cooks and rests.
5 large eggs, at room temperature
1/8th teaspoon salt
1 cup plus two tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 oz chopped white chocolate
1 cups frozen High Bush blueberries
2 Meyer lemons (or regular lemons) zested & juiced
Sweetened whipped cream
Confectioner’s sugar for garnish
Preheat oven to 225 degrees F.
Draw a 9” circle on a piece of parchment paper with a pencil (I used a small plate), turn the paper over and place on a baking sheet. Set aside.
Place the egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment (save the yolks for making shortbread cookies for Santa!) and beat the whites and salt on high speed until the mixture is stiff and holds a firm peak.
With the mixer on high, slowly pour in the sugar and beat until whites are thick and glossy.
By hand, fold in vanilla extract, vinegar, cornstarch and white chocolate until mixture is well blended and streak free.
Spoon mixture on to the prepared baking sheet in a circle and form a peak in the center.
Mixture will be very thick, like marshmallow cream.
Bake in preheated oven for 1 1/2 hours. Turn off oven and allow pavlova to sit in the oven until oven is cool.
Meanwhile, combine blueberries, Meyer lemon zest and juice in a small saucepan. Over low heat, simmer blueberries until they are bright red and syrupy, about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add remaining two tablespoons sugar to mixture and continue to simmer over low heat for 15 minutes. Taste blueberry syrup and add a bit more sugar if necessary as tartness varies in both blueberries and Meyer lemons. Set syrup aside to cool
When ready for dessert, gently carve the top few inches off of the top of the pavlova (a serrated steak knife works well).