Thursday, 29 September 2011

Provamel Botanical Yogurts Cooking Challenge #1 : Autumnal Fruit Pavlova


A little while ago, I was contacted by the lovely people at Provamel who threw down the gauntlet and challenged me to try out a couple of recipes using their Botanical Yogurts. Having reviewed Provamel yogurts in the past (here) and knowing that they have a range of interesting flavours, I said I'd love to have a go - then panicked about not being able to rise to the challenge and make the perfect meringue !

Well, shortly afterwards, they kindly arranged for all the ingredients to be delivered. I loved discovering a brand new ingredient that I'd never tried before : cardamom pods.


Right, time to have a good look at the recipe then ! This is the professional photo of what it's supposed to look like - eeeek !


And the recipe :


Autumnal Fruit Pavlova with Provamel Apple and Green Tea Yogurt


Preparation Time: 2 hrs

Cooking Time: 1 ½ hrs

Serves: 6

Ingredients:

350g Provamel Apple and Green Tea Yogurt
4 egg whites
150g caster sugar
140g light brown muscovado sugar (90g for the pavlova and 50g for caramelising fruit)
1 tsp white wine vinegar
1 tsp corn flour
4 plums
1 pear, sliced
120g blackberries
30g toasted hazelnuts, chopped
60g soya margarine

Method:

Pre-heat oven to 120 ºC/250 ºF/Gas Mark ½



- Using a large, clean mixing bowl and an electric hand whisk; whisk the egg whites until forming soft peaks. Turn the whisk up to top speed and gradually add in the sugars, a tablespoon at a time, until all incorporated. Gently fold in the corn flour and white wine vinegar.

- Spoon the mixture on to a flat baking tray lined with baking parchment, making a circular shape about 25 cm across.

- Bake in the oven for 1 ½ hrs. Turn the oven off but leave the meringue in for at least 2 hrs or overnight with the door shut - this allows the meringue to dry out properly.

- Cut the plums in half and remove the stones. Place on a baking tray along with the sliced pear, and sprinkle with the remaining 50g muscovado sugar and dot with the soya margarine before placing under a hot grill for 5-10 mins until sticky and soft.

- Top the pavlova base with the Provamel Apple and Green Tea Yogurt and top with the plums, pears, blackberries and toasted hazelnuts.

And here's our version :


I have to say, I even impressed myself ! We don't have an electric whisk so we had to beat the egg whites by hand, which I was worried wouldn't work so well.


Sophie rose to the challenge and said she was really looking forward to doing some "grown-up cooking", rather than the kid-friendly baking kits I often use in the kitchen with the girls. She did really well.



We didn't have any baking parchment either so I used foil instead. The only thing that "went wrong" was that the kids couldn't wait to eat it so it only got 2 hours in the oven to dry out, rather than leaving it overnight as I originally planned. This meant that it actually stayed fluffy, gooey and almost molten in the middle, but we decided this was actually a good thing as it made it into a really moist, indulgent dessert. Sophie said she preferred it to normal meringues that are too dry. Phew, got away with that one then !


Once it's topped with yogurt, sticky baked fruit and hazelnuts, it really looks the business. Tastewise, it got a huge thumbs up all round. Definitely a dessert with wow-factor that is perfect for finishing off a dinner party meal.


You know you've got a really good recipe when you can tweak it to suit your own tastes and needs and this one is perfect for this. We discovered that Jordan's Country Crisp clusters make a delicious alternative (or addition) to the toasted hazelnuts.


As a busy mum, I will also be tempted to redo this recipe as an instant dessert, using ready-made meringue nests topped with yogurt and the baked fruit. Which is very similar to the delicious-sounding Eton Mess recipe which is my second challenge, so watch this space at the weekend to see how that goes. (It'll be a piece of cake after the Pavlova, that's for sure !)


for more information and recipes : http://www.provamel.co.uk/

Other blogposts you may be interested in :


6 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. for future reference you might like to know 2/3 mins in a microwave drys out your meringue once it comes out the oven, but like you I prefer them chewy.
    Im being a cheeky bitch here...but wonder why your kids only ever appear eating in blog posts in their pj's? they do other things dressed but eating seems to be a pj based activity...
    I may try this to use up some blackberries and blackcurrants now I have mastered egg free meringues

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  3. LOL They're not always in their PJ's but they are sometimes when they have a bath before tea & bed ! I'm in the middle of reviewing Discovery fajitas and you'll be pleased to know they're dressed for this one !!

    Great tip for the meringues, thanks :)There's another recipe with meringues and fruit coming up over the weekend too :)

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  4. Kate Cunningham1 October 2011 09:49

    Your pavlova looked every bit as appetising as the professional photograph where they probably had 10+ pavlovas available, all in different serving dishes and proper lighting etc. (I wonder if they airbrush food?)
    I'm going to try this recipe for myself.

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  5. Aww thank you, have you tried it yet ? How did it go ? :)

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  6. Your pavlova looks delicious. I've never made one before - always been something I've been a bit scared off. I should get it a go.

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