How to make Black Forest pavlova that’s ‘quite the showstopper’

If your mouth isn't watering just from the look of this picture, it might be time to check your pulse.

Recipe: Brown-sugar Black Forest pavlova


Serves 4

  • 6 egg whites
  • 375g light brown muscovado sugar
  • 3tbspn cocoa powder
  • 400g cherries, pitted
  • 2tbspn cornflour
  • ½ lemon, juice of
  • 100ml kirsch (optional)
  • 3tbspn caster sugar
  • 600ml double cream, softly whipped
  • 150ml chocolate sauce

To decorate

  • 100g cherries, whole
  • 100g dark chocolate


  • Preheat your oven to 140˚C fan/160˚C/gas mark 3. Line two baking sheets with parchment and draw a 25cm (10in) circle on each.
  • Add the egg whites and sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer and place it over a pan of simmering water. Whisk until heated and the sugar has dissolved, so you can no longer feel the grains between your finger and thumb when rubbed together. Place the bowl under the stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and whisk until you have a stiff meringue. Spoon the meringue onto the parchment paper, dividing it as evenly as possible between them. Sift over the cocoa powder. Bake for two hours and leave to cool in the oven, ideally overnight, with the door closed (this is to prevent cracking, although cracks aren’t entirely bad as this is supposed to be a delicious mess).
  • Heat the pitted cherries in a saucepan with the cornflour, lemon juice and sugar until juicy and set aside until ready to assemble.
  • Place one meringue onto a serving plate and spoon over half the whipped cream. Drizzle over half of the chocolate sauce and then spoon on half of the cooked cherries. Place the second meringue on top and spoon over the remaining whipped cream and chocolate sauce, finishing with the remaining cooked cherries. Decorate the top with whole cherries and chocolate curls — made by simply dragging a knife over a bar of chocolate — and serve with pride, as this is quite the showstopper.
  • This pavlova will need to be refrigerated, especially on warmer days, and it is best enjoyed on the day it’s assembled.

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