Divine is how one person described this dessert! I created this after mentioning to a friend that I had made a pavlova filled with whipped cream and covered in mixed berries for guests but that I hadn’t been able to eat it. She suggested substituting lemon curd for the cream and an idea began to form – lemon and raspberries go well together so how about topping the lemon curd with fresh raspberries? And then, the final piece of the puzzle, how about drizzling raspberry puree over the top?
Before starting to cook place a dinner plate on parchment paper and draw a circle around the plate and then cut out the circle. Oil a cookie sheet, place parchment circle on top and brush with oil to prevent sticking.
Place a packet of frozen raspberries to thaw in a bowl of tepid water.
Meringues are easy enough to make. The cooking process is around 2 hours (1 hour cooking on a low heat of 160 degrees fahrenheit and 1 hour still in the oven but with the heat turned off) and should not be rushed but once the meringue is in the oven you can make the lemon curd as, once made, it needs to cool and then spend an hour in the fridge.
Normally lemon curd is made with butter but I have come across a vegan butter – Earth Balance brand – and this butter has opened up all sorts of new possibilities for recipes and from reading the label it seems healthy enough too. If you want a less tart lemon curd use Meyer lemons.
Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees F
4 egg whites (save 3 egg yolks for lemon curd recipe)
8 oz caster sugar
1 tsp. vanilla essence
1 tsp. white vinegar
1 tsp. cornstarch
Whisk egg whites until stiff (a good test to see if they are stiff enough is to turn the bowl over in the air and they should not fall out!).
Add the sugar a little at a time and then add the next 3 ingredients one after the other.
Spoon meringue mixture onto parchment paper, then shape it with your fingers until the edges of the circle are higher than the middle (like a pie shape).
Place in the pre-heated oven for an hour, then turn off the oven and leave meringue in there for another hour.
3 egg yolks
1/2 cup caster sugar
Juice of 2 large lemons
2 tsp. lemon zest
3 oz vegan butter – cut into small pieces
Whisk the egg yolks before adding the lemon juice and zest, then place in a pan over low to medium heat (you do not want scrambled eggs!).
Add the butter bit by bit, stirring all the time. You will notice the mixture gradually thickening and you want it to get to the point where you can see the trace of where the spoon has been and at the same time you will see that the mixture is just beginning to form little bubbles. At this point remove the pan from the heat and pour lemon curd into a glass bowl set over a bowl of iced water so the curd doesn’t continue cooking. When cool, place in the fridge for an hour or so to thicken some more.
RASPBERRIES AND RASPBERRY PUREE
1 punnet of raspberries
1 x 10 oz bag of frozen raspberries
1 – 2 tsp. confectioner’s sugar, if needed
Once the lemon curd is spooned into the meringue, sprinkle fresh raspberries over the curd then drizzle with the raspberry puree. This can be done an hour ahead of serving.
Place the thawed raspberries in a sieve and drain. Then put a bowl under the sieve and stir with a spoon until only raspberry seeds are left in the sieve and the puree is on the bowl.
Taste the puree and if needed add confectioner’s sugar
Drizzle puree over the dessert.
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