May 02, 2006


When your friend asks you to bring a dessert to a gathering, and you have a half-bag of shredded coconut, a handful of almost-overripe strawberries, and a few bananas, what do you do? You dig around in the cookbooks, decide that macaroons are not going to use up the berries, and that coconut custard pie is just too much work, and settle on a pavlova instead. Then you bike to the supermarket and buy kiwis and heavy cream, and get busy.

I used the Cook's Illustrated Best Baking Book recipe, and the meringue came out beautiful, just perfect, but I couldn't get it off the parchment paper when it came time to serve, so I guess it wasn't so perfect after all. It broke all up into ugly sticky bits, but i shoved them back together and hid them under fruit and cream, and no one was the wiser save H who witnessed the whole thing. I put kiwis and strawberries and bananas onto it, drizzled it all with passionfruit puree, which is much runnier than I expected it to be, but is also so staggeringly delicious that I am putting it on every pav I ever make henceforward, and topped the works with toasted coconut. The whipped cream went on separately, because one of the guests was lactose intolerant, and the whole thing was rather well-received, happily. I was very happy with it myself, since the meringue base is very sweet but the rest of it is all just fruit and unsweetened cream, so the whole thing works once it's together -- and it's easy to make, AND as a bonus it makes me think fondly back on my trip to New Zealand. What's not to love?

Posted by foodnerd at May 2, 2006 08:30 PM
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