Who doesn’t love a bite of creamy desserts that are absolutely drool worthy? Not just us, but even the stars of B-town can’t resist their sweet tooth. The latest actress to fall prey to a desert induced sugar rush has been Shruthi Hassan. In a video that the actress shared to her social media, Shruthi was seen dancing while holding a pavlova cake. The cake looked absolutely delicious and Shruthi couldn’t keep calm as she held on to her favourite dessert. Shruthi loves to cook and is quite the foodie. Many of the actress’s posts on social media revolve around her cooking escapades. Recently, Shruthi posted a video with her mother Sarika, enjoying panipuri from a street side shop. Shruthi’s always posting about the dishes she loves and sharing a sneak peek of her foodies diary with her fans and followers. 

For the uninitiated, the dessert that Shruthi is seen doing a happy dance with is a meringue-based dessert called Pavlova. The origination of this creamy and crusty dessert is debated. Both Australia and New Zealand claim to be the place where Pavlova originated, in the early 20th century. This dish was named after the Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova. 

Shruthi enjoying a pavlova (left), Shruthi and Sarika eating panipuri (right). Credit: Shruthi Hassan's Instagram.

Taking the form of a cake-like circular block of baked meringue, pavlova has a crisp crust and soft, light inside. The confection is usually topped with fruits like strawberries, kiwi and whipped cream. In Shruthi’s video the Pavlova was topped with mango pieces. The recipe to make Pavlova isn’t an easy one and requires effort and time. However, if you want to try to bake the Pavlova at home, give this recipe by Chef Lindsey Farr, a try: 

Ingredients:

For the Pavlova:

  1. 180 g egg whites [from approximately 6 eggs]
  2. ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
  3. 260 g sugar [2 cups + 2 tablespoons)
  4. 1 teaspoon  vinegar
  5. 1 tablespoon vanilla
  6. 2 teaspoon cornstarch

For the Whipped Cream:

  1. 2 cups heavy whipping cream (cold)
  2. 1 tablespoon confectioner’s sugar (more to taste)
  3. 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 

For the macerated berries:

  1. 5 cups mixed berries 
  2. ½ cups granulated sugar 
  3. ¼ cups lemon juice

Method:

For the pavlova:

  1. Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper or a non-stick liner.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, add your egg whites, vinegar and cream of tartar. Begin whisking on medium-low to break up the whites. When they start foaming, begin adding your sugar slowly. This is a lot of sugar so you are going to need to add more than you think at a time. Stop and scrape down your bowl because there are usually chunks of sugar stuck to the side.
  3. Once all the sugar has been added, turn the mixer up to high and allow it to whip until stiff peaks form. It will get very white and glossy.
  4. Reduce speed and add the vanilla. Turn the speed up to high once more, just until the vanilla is incorporated. You don’t want to overwhip at the point.
  5. Stop the mixer, remove the bowl from the machine and tap the whisk gently against the side of the bowl to release the meringue trapped in the whisk. There is enough sugar to make this a very stable meringue but you still want to be moderately gently when tapping. Sif the cornstarch directly into the meringue. Fold in sifted cornstarch just until combined. You don’t want to over fold as every moment that passes and every time you agitate the meringue, it is falling. 
  6. Bake in an oven preheated to 200°F (convection ideally) for 40 minutes to an hour. It is done when you can gently touch the outside and it is firm. If it is still squishy, gently close the oven door and continue baking. The time will vary by the size and shape that you chose to make your pavlova.
  7. Turn off oven and let cool in oven for 1 hour. Remove and let it cool completely.

For the macerated berries:

  1. At least an hour before you plan to serve the pavlova, mix all the ingredients for the berries in a large bowl. You can also do this the night before, but just know that the longer the berries sit in the sugar, the more juice you will have. 

For the whipped cream:

  1. In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients and whip the cream with a whisk until medium peaks.

Credit:Pexels.