You can’t mess with perfection, but you can make it seasonal. For those colder winter months, we’ve taken an incredible pavlova recipe from Cooks with Cocktails and spiced it up a little, adding cinnamon and fresh ginger to a mix of winter fruits—pomegranate, persimmon, and fresh citrus—cooked in a hearty Zinfandel from California. Pair with a California Zinfandel or California dessert wine.
- 6 egg whites
- 1 ¼ cups (250g) sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoon (7.2g) white vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon (.5g) kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.1g) vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon (3g) orange blossom water
Red Wine Compote
- 3/4 cups (170g) California Zinfandel
- 1/2 cup (87g) pomegranate arils + more for garnish
- 2 cups (350g) sliced fuyu persimmons + a few slices for garnish
- 1 teaspoon (4.2g) vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon (14.4g) lemon juice
- ⅛ teaspoon (.25g) ground allspice
- ⅛ teaspoon (.25g) minced fresh ginger
- ⅛ teaspoon (.41g) cornstarch
- 2 blood oranges, supremed, with juice reserved
- Mix of fresh citrus, supremed, for garnish
Marscapone Whipped Cream
- 2 cups (480g) heavy whipping cream, chilled
- 1 cup (225g) Marscapone cheese
- 1/2 cup (65g) powdered sugar
Cook time: 2 hours
Start by preheating the oven to 275°F (135°C) and placing the bowl of a stand mixer in the freezer.
To make the pavlova, beat the egg whites in a mixer, starting on low speed then increasing the speed to medium. Beat until the egg whites are frothy and start to turn white. Gradually add the sugar to the egg whites until it’s all incorporated. Continue beating on medium speed until the egg whites form stiff peaks. Fold in the vinegar, salt, vanilla extract, and orange blossom water, then turn on low speed to mix evenly, about 5-7 seconds.
Line two baking trays with parchment paper. Place a 7 ½-8 inch (19-20cm) plate on top of each piece, then draw a line around the plate to create three uniform circles (two on one sheet, one on the other). Turn the papers over and put them back on the trays. Distribute the whipped egg whites evenly amongst all three circles, spreading them to fill to the edges.
Place the pavlovas in the oven and cook for 1 hour and 15 mins. Turn off the heat and let them cool in the oven slowly. Do not take the pavlova off the parchment paper until it has completely cooled or it could stick and break.
While those bake, make the red wine compote. Heat the Zinfandel in a sauce pan to a simmer and cook until wine is reduced a third in volume. Add the pomegranate arils and sliced persimmons, then simmer over medium-low heat for 30 minutes, or until the persimmons are tender and the sauce is starting to thicken. Stir in the vanilla, lemon juice, allspice, ginger, and cornstarch. Increase the heat to bring the mixture to a boil, then lower to a slow simmer until the reduction coats the back of a spoon. Set the finished compote aside to cool thoroughly.
Once the pavlova and compote have cooled completely, it’s time to make the whipped topping. Pour the chilled whipping cream into the chilled mixer bowl. Beat on high speed until the cream starts to get fluffy, then slowly add the sugar and Mascarpone cheese, taking caution not to over whip the cream. Set the topping aside.
Assemble the pavlova by placing one of the rounds on a serving platter. Top with a third of the whipped cream and a large spoonful of the red wine compote. Repeat with the second and third rounds, stacking the pavlova, spreading a layer of the whipped cream, then drizzling with compote. Top with the citrus supremes, remaining persimmon slices, and a few more pomegranate arils, then serve!
*Inspired by Cooks with Cocktails pavlova recipe