Warning! Total indulgence and naughtiness ahead. Which is sometimes needed! Our resident home cook Kellie, decided she needed something decadent yet relatively easy to take along to the family Australia Day BBQ this year. She decided on the best ever banana caramel macadamia pavlova – bananas macadamias, caramel, sounds good right? Easy right?
Here is how to make the Banana Caramel Macadamia Pavlova and how it played out for Kellie!
The absolutely draining humidity that Adelaide has experienced made sure to laugh its butt off at me, as I attempted the perfect Pav- crisp, yet marshmallowy, tall and proud, and please, no, not the dreaded “weeping”. Everything seemed to be going so well, until I came back to begin the fun part of decorating, to find my masterpiece had indeed, collapsed and wept. BUT! It was still beautifully crisp and totally and gloriously chewy and pillowy soft in all the right places.
So what if wasn’t perfect? Life sure isn’t and nor are my pavlovas! Say it with me oh miserable meringue makers, we are failures and we are proud!
Have fun with this recipe, it may seem complicated but it really isn’t, and don’t collapse and weep even if your pav does.
6 room temperature eggs
1 1/4 cups castor sugar
2 tsp white vinegar
2 tsp good vanilla
1 tbs cornflour
NOTE: Ensure your bench mixer bowl, whisks and other utensils are scrupulously clean and free from oily residue, a handy way to do this is to wipe over with lemon juice or vinegar. Also be sure to not get ANY yolk in the whites when separating, your whites will not whip if there is any fat present.
- Preheat oven to 130c.
- Separate eggs one by one in a small dish and add to the bowl of your mixer.
- Whisk to soft peak stage and begin adding your sugar by the tablespoon.
- Continue until all sugar is dissolved – you can test this by rubbing the mixture between your thumb and forefinger and feel for grittiness.
- Keep whisking until you can no longer feel any grains of sugar. The mix will be beautifully thick and white and glossy.
- Add the vinegar, vanilla and cornflour, and whisk until combined.
- Spoon the meringue onto a cookie sheet lined with greaseproof paper and form into a rough round.
- Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes until it feels dry to the touch. After this time turn the often off and leave the door slightly ajar until thoroughly cool.
In the meantime:
- toast 1/2 cup macadamias lightly in a dry frying pan.
- Remove and place on a piece of greaseproof paper
- Add 3/4 cup castor sugar to the same pan and slowly caramelise without stirring, just swirl the pan as the sugar melts and remove as soon as the caramel is a rich amber colour
- Immediately pour over the macadamias.
- Place aside to set hard.
- When cooled and hard whizz up in a food processor to a nice crumb, or alternatively bash with a rolling pin for a more coarse result.
- To a medium saucepan add 4 tbs butter, 1 cup soft brown sugar and 1/2 cup cream.
- Melt together and whisk to combine and simmer over low heat for 5 minutes stirring regularly.
- Turn off heat and set aside to cool totally.
- Whisk 300 ml cream, 1 tsp good vanilla and 3tbs icing sugar until very thick.
- Set aside in fridge until assembly.
- Chop 2 large bananas into even slices.
- Place cooled pav on your serving plate. In my case I left it on the baking paper as I didn’t trust it to play nice and come off in one piece!
- Pile on the cream, followed by the bananas, and drizzle over the luscious caramel sauce.
- Serve with the praline on individual servings or on the whole pav, just bear in mind the toffee component will dissolve.
This is a totally wicked dessert and must be eaten with absolute rapture!
Eat well, love big