Cherry & Chocolate Pavlova Slab
6 egg whites, room temp
350g caster sugar
1 teaspoon white vinegar
100g dark chocolate, melted, at room temp
1 1/2 cups cream
40g icing sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla essence
500g cherries, halved and pitted.
1 tablespoon balsamic
3 tablespoons caster sugar
1/4 cup water
Chocolate to grate.
The night before or earlier in the day, make the pavlova: preheat the oven to 160° and trace out at 20x30cm rectangle on a baking paper lined tray.
In a stand mixer with a very clean, dry bowl and whisk attachment (no grease), whisk the room temperature egg whites with a pinch of salt on medium speed to soft peaks.
Gradually add the caster sugar, spoon by spoon, until it is all added. Beat on medium for a further few minutes, then add the white vinegar and beat on high for 5 minutes until stiff and the sugar has completely dissolved - no granules when you rub a pinch between your fingers. Add the cooled melted chocolate and just swirl through.
Spoon onto the tray and spread into a rectangle. Place in the oven and turn down to 130°C. Bake for 1hour - 90 minutes or until dry and crisp to touch on the surface, then turn off the oven and leave to cool completely.
Preheat oven to 200°C. Place the cherries in a roasting dish and toss with balsamic and caster sugar. Add 1/4 cup water. Roast for 30 minutes or until tender and syrupy. Leave to cool.
When ready to serve, whisk together the cream, mascarpone, icing sugar and vanilla until thick. Spread the cream in swirls over the pavlova. Top with cherries and grated chocolate.