Personal Pavlovas


serves eight

4 large egg whites

1/4 t. cream of tartar

3/4 cup sugar

  1.  Preheat oven to 200 degrees. If it goes down to 180 degrees, so much the better.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Beat egg whites with cream of tartar on high speed until soft peaks form. Add sugar, a tablespoon at a time, beating until stiff peaks form. Using a pastry bag, or a spoon, make circles about 3 1/2 inches in diameter on the parchment paper. Use a spoon to create a small depression in the center.
  3. Bake for two hours then turn the oven off and leave them alone inside the oven - at least two hours. If you have time to leave them in the oven longer, so much the better. They must be completely dry on the interior, or else you could be biting into a chewy, gummy meringue. Carelly remove them from the parchment paper.

16 ounces Greek-style yogurt, drained (I put the yogurt in a coffee filter and let it sit overnight)
8 ounces creme fraiche
1 cup sugar
1/2 of a vanilla bean
(I preserve vanilla beans in a covered jar filled with sugar. I have found that eventually the vanilla bean will dry out, in which case I chop it up and put it in the blender along with the sugar. The result is a sugar speckled with vanilla bean - great for desserts or for a special cup of coffee.)
  1. Drain the yogurt, then with a wooden spoon, combine with the creme fraiche, sugar and vanilla bean.
  2. Spoon into the meringue shell and top with berries that have been mixed with a little sugar, and freshly squeezed lemon and orange juice.