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PavlovaWhat a busy and interesting couple of weeks I have had, first there was the trip away with my trainee chefs, judging at the South Island Salon Culinaire and this week I have had the great pleasure of sharing my kitchen and table with new friends.

Sometime ago I was contacted by Mervyn from North Carolina about my Wildfood's column. We have been emailing each other back and forth since, and he and his family decided to make New Zealand their summer vacation spot. They have been touring New Zealand this last week and finally made it to Greymouth and I met them at the train station. After joining me for lunch, they headed south for the night to take in the spectacular Fox and Franz Josef Glaciers and a helicopter trip onto them. They came back the next day and joined me for dinner. So as to give them a taste of New Zealand, I put together the following menu using only ingredients that had been caught, shot, gathered, grown for or by me.

My deepest thanks to Kylie for going out and getting me the wild goat. My apologies Mervyn for not having huhu grubs in time to try . . . they did arrive on my doorstep the next afternoon! A big thank you also for the real corn grits and adding to my recipe book collection . . . I look forward to getting into the kitchen and giving them all a go.

Creamy New Zealand rock lobster bisque enhanced with a splash of fine cognac

Flash fried slices of paua (abalone), poached crayfish medallions, sashimi salmon served
with a honey poached tamarillo, dressed with truffle and avocado oil,
and finished with a red capsicum coulis

Pot roasted leg of wild goat, filled with a chestnut and fetta cheese farce,
grilled spare ribs, served on a kumara (New Zealand sweet potato) and fresh
beetroot rosti, finished with a beetroot and game essence

Antipodean Pavlova tower, with caramel shards, home made
feijoa ice cream and passionfruit sauce

Another 5 names added to my table…..I have a trestle table I use for dinner parties and underneath the white linen tablecloth lies stories to be told….anyone that dines has to sign the table. Who will be next I wonder?

I had already decided on the making the famous Australasian dessert for them; Pavlova, when here at HUB-UK, we also received a request for a meringue recipe. So this week's recipe is dedicated to my new friends: Mervyn, Gena, Sari (Sue-lee misses you!) and Aubree of North Carolina and also to Marsha C who requested the meringue recipe.

Believe it or not there are many types of the humble meringue so join me over the next few weeks, when I will be covering all the different types. So hang tight Marsha, try Pavlova this week and all the other meringues will be forth coming!

Pavlova for those of you that have never come across it before is somewhere between a meringue and marshmallow, it has that crisp meringue shell and yet has a soft marshmallow type centre. Controversy always reigns down here as to whether it is an Australian or New Zealand creation / dessert . . . and it is always big news when an older recipe for it is discovered; next to rugby I think it's the biggest inter-country rivalry or start of an argument between the Australians and Kiwis. What is known is that it was created and named for Anna Pavlova a ballerina. There are many recipes for Pav (as it is known here in the Antipodes), this is my favourite.

Ingredients for Pavlova

castor sugar
egg whites
white vinegar or lemon juice
corn flour
vanilla essence

Method #1 for making Pavlova

  • Place the egg whites and sugar in a bowl over a bain-marie

  • Whisk the whites and sugar together until it reaches a temperature of 40ºC (it will feel just warm to the touch if you do not have a food thermometer)

  • Remove it from the bain-marie and continue beating it until it is completely cold

  • When the mixture is cold fold in the sifted corn flour

  • Add the vanilla essence to taste (approximately 2 tsp) and the vinegar

Method #2 for making Pavlova

  • Place the egg whites into the bowl and beat to the soft peak stage

  • Gradually whisk in the sugar until the stiff peak stage is obtained and the mixture is smooth and glossy

  • Fold in the sifted corn flour

  • Add the vanilla essence to taste (approximately 2 tsp) and the vinegar

  • Place a large bottomless cake ring onto a baking sheet lined with greaseproof paper or a silicon mat, spoon in the mixture and level it off with a palette knife

  • Run a knife around the inside of the cake ring to remove it and tidy the edges with a palette knife


  • Spoon mixture onto silicon mat or baking sheet lined with greaseproof paper and shape free form with a warm, wet palette knife

  • Cook in a warm oven 160°C just until the Pavlova starts to crack with little or no colour

  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool

Chef's Tip for making Pavlova:

One large one or smaller individual ones may be formed and cooked

The taller / thicker the Pavlova the better, as this ensures a creamier centre: about 15cm tall is ideal.

Serve with whipped cream and fresh fruits or as did, make it part of a larger dessert

Enjoy your Pavlova and bon appetit . . . . .

Chef's terminology:

litres   tsp = teaspoon
millelitres   tbs = tablespoon
kilograms   sq = sufficient quantity (add to taste)
grams   pc = piece, meaning a whole one of

Recipe from professional
Chef Tallyrand

Email Hub-UK : info@hub-uk.com