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Deconstructed Pavlova with Lemon Basil Sorbet

Pavlova with Lemon Basil Sorbet

Pavlova with Lemon Basil Sorbet is a modern twist on the classic Australian dessert traditionally known for its crisp meringue outside and soft, light inside, topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit. This version introduces a vibrant, refreshing element with lemon basil sorbet, accompanied by a berry coulis, fresh berries, and edible flowers, presenting a balance of sweet, tart, and herbal flavours in an elegant, contemporary fashion.

Pavlova with Lemon Basil Sorbet

Preparation Time and Servings:

  • Prep Time: 45 minutes + 2 hours freezing time for the sorbet

  • Servings: 4

Ingredients List:

For the Lemon Basil Sorbet:

  • 250ml (1 cup) water

  • 200g (1 cup) caster sugar

  • 250ml (1 cup) lemon juice (approx. 4-5 lemons)

  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest

  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, finely chopped

For the Meringue:

  • 4 egg whites, at room temperature

  • 220g (1 cup) caster sugar

For the Berry Coulis:

  • 200g (1 1/2 cups) mixed berries (such as raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries), fresh or frozen

  • 50g (1/4 cup) caster sugar

  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

To Serve:

  • Mixed fresh berries

  • Edible flowers

  • Fresh mint leaves

Equipment Needed:

  • Ice cream maker

  • Baking sheet

  • Parchment paper

  • Saucepan

  • Blender or food processor

  • Electric mixer

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Lemon Basil Sorbet:

  • In a saucepan over medium heat, dissolve the sugar in water until clear. Remove from heat, add lemon juice, zest, and basil. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.

  • Churn in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions. Freeze until firm, about 2 hours.

  1. Meringue Shards:

  • Preheat oven to 100°C (215°F). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

  • Beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar, beating until stiff peaks form and you cannot feel grains of sugar when meringue mix is rubbed between fingers.

  • Form the meringue mixture into the desired shape on the prepared sheet. Bake for 1 hour. Turn off the oven and allow the meringue to cool completely with the door slightly open.

  1. Berry Coulis:

  • Combine berries, sugar, and lemon juice in a saucepan over low heat. Cook until berries soften and the mixture thickens. Blend until smooth and strain.

  1. To Serve:

  • Arrange meringue, a scoop of lemon basil sorbet, and fresh berries on each plate. Drizzle with berry coulis and garnish with edible flowers and mint leaves.

Suggested Side Dishes:

  • A glass of sparkling Moscato

  • Light, airy chiffon cake

Common Mistakes/Points of Care:

  • Ensure the meringue is baked at a low temperature to avoid browning.

  • Chill the sorbet mixture thoroughly before churning to ensure a smooth texture.

  • Use fresh, quality ingredients for the best flavour and presentation.

Nutritional Values:

This dessert provides a light, refreshing finish to any meal, with the primary calories coming from the sugar in the sorbet and meringue. The fresh berries offer antioxidants and vitamins, making it a delightfully indulgent yet not overly heavy option.

Enjoy crafting this elegant, contemporary dessert that's sure to impress with its balance of textures and flavours, along with its visually stunning presentation.

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