My younger brother thinks he may have proved himself a worthy apprentice to Mum in pavlova making. He sent me this photo of the freshly-baked base:
I compared it to the two pavlovas Mum had just made:
My sister reckons it’s all down to how slowly you add the sugar. One tablespoon at a time, with a minute between each addition, seems to work. Other theories are that the eggs must be room temperature and there must be no trace of yolk in the separated egg whites.
The problem with a “high” pavlova (as opposed to Mum’s “flatties”) is getting the cream and strawberries to stay on the top. After a couple of “avalanches” the top was finished. This picture shows my brother’s finished pavlova and another of Mum’s specialties, Christmas pudding, which my brother also cooked to perfection. The recipe is our favourite: the Overnight Pudding in the old Edmond’s Cookery Book.
My brother’s pavlova also passed the taste test with its pillowy centre and crisp edge.
Mum’s were equally deliciously, and the last one is probably being polished off for Boxing Day breakfast by my nephews as I write!