Lemon Cream Mini Pavlovas

Lemon Cream Mini Pavlovas

Lemon Cream Mini Pavlovas garnished with blueberries and mint sit on a white cake tray decorated with blue flowers.

Lemon Cream Mini Pavlovas

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Where the heck is spring??  As I write this it is literally -15°C.  I think global warming has skipped over us here in Alberta.  But these bright and cheery Lemon Cream Mini Pavlovas are sure to brighten and warm any day.  Crisp yet chewy pavlova nests are filled with lemon curd and whipped cream filling.  They are lovely topped with fresh berries such as blueberry or raspberry and perfect for Easter or Mother’s Day. 

Mini pavlova nests piped onto a baking tray lined with parchment and ready to be baked for Lemon Cream Mini Pavlovas.

Sadly, with the way the world is these days, most of us may not be having much of a family gathering at Easter.  It will most likely be a modest meal with homebound family members and chats throughout the weekend with family and friends on Facetime or Skype. And this is okay because it’s what we need to do right now to keep everyone safe. As for this beautiful dessert, perhaps it will have to wait for another special occasion. Maybe Mother’s Day, bridal shower or what the heck, how about the first day of summer! There are always reasons to celebrate, so you’ll want to bookmark this recipe.

Lemon curd for Lemon Cream Mini Pavlovas in a small glass bowl that is resting on a blue and white cloth.

Here are a few helpful hints for this recipe:

-make sure your mixing bowl is very clean (grease will hinder a great meringue).

-use egg whites that are at room temperature (warm egg whites incorporate more air than cold ones).

-you can grind granulated sugar for about 10 seconds using a mini grinder if castor sugar is not available.

-stick the parchment to the baking tray with a few dabs of meringue to prevent it from moving while piping.

-place the tray on a damp towel to prevent the tray from moving while piping.

-don’t open the oven door until it has completely cooled as the warm dry air inside helps to dry out the meringues without further cooking.

-baked meringues will keep several days in an airtight container at room temperature.

-add filling to the meringue nests when ready to serve or up to a couple hours in advance. Adding it more than a couple of hours ahead will cause the meringues to soften too much.

Lemon Cream Mini Pavlovas sit on a white cake tray in the background while one is served on a while dessert plate and garnished with blueberries and mint.

Lemon Cream Mini Pavlovas
Print Recipe
    Servings Prep Time
    8 people 30-40 minutes
    Cook Time Passive Time
    80 minutes 1+ hours
    Servings Prep Time
    8 people 30-40 minutes
    Cook Time Passive Time
    80 minutes 1+ hours
    Lemon Cream Mini Pavlovas
    Print Recipe
      Servings Prep Time
      8 people 30-40 minutes
      Cook Time Passive Time
      80 minutes 1+ hours
      Servings Prep Time
      8 people 30-40 minutes
      Cook Time Passive Time
      80 minutes 1+ hours
      Ingredients
      Mini Pavlovas
      Lemon Cream
      Servings: people
      Instructions
      Mini Pavlovas
      1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a large baking tray with parchment and mark out 8-3" circles. Flip parchment over.
      2. Combine egg whites and cream of tartar. Whip until soft peaks are starting to form. Gradually add sugar, about a tablespoon at a time. Scrape the sides of the bowl and continue to whip on high speed until stiff and glossy, about 6-7 minutes using a stand mixer.
      3. Add vanilla and whip to combine.
      4. Sift cornstarch over the meringue and fold to combine.
      5. Fit a large piping bag with your desired tip, I used a Wilton 1M.
      6. Fill the piping bag with meringue and squeeze a dab of meringue onto the corners of the parchment to stick it to the baking tray. This will help keep the parchment from moving while you pipe. Place the baking tray on a slightly damp kitchen towel to prevent the tray from moving. Fill in the traced circle, creating a base. Continue to pipe along the edge of the base for two turns, creating a basket.
      7. Place the tray in the oven on the middle rack and immediately turn oven temperature to 225°F. Bake for 80 minutes, turn off the oven and allow meringues to remain undisturbed in the oven until completely cool. Meringues will be firm and hollow sounding with a slight bit of tackiness and chew in the bottom layer.
      Lemon Cream
      1. Combine all ingredients except butter in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium-low heat, stirring constantly until mixture thickens, about 7-8 minutes. Whisk in butter until smooth.
      2. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly before covering with plastic wrap directly on the surface. Allow to cool completely and chill until ready to use.
      3. When ready to assemble pavlovas, which should be no more than 2 hours in advance, whip heavy cream until stiff. Fold whipped cream into lemon curd and fill meringues generously. Top with fresh blueberries and serve.
      Recipe Notes

      -Using egg whites at room temperature will result in more volume.

      -If unable to use castor or superfine sugar, simply grind regular granulated sugar in a mini coffee grinder for about 10 seconds.  Even this is not true castor sugar, it breaks down the sugar enough for better absorption into the meringue.

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      Lavender White Chocolate Meringues

      Lavender White Chocolate Meringues

      Crunchy, yet melt in your mouth, Lavender White Chocolate Meringues are a sweet treat to be shared. Conveniently just the right size to pop in your mouth like no one will notice, but with a hint of lavender and creamy white chocolate, you won’t be the only one standing near the cookie plate. These pretty meringues with their gorgeous violet colour and hint of lavender tease us with the thought of spring and Easter and they’re fun for everyone.

      Meringue is so versatile, can take on many flavours and most any colour. Once whipped up to a stiff peak they hold up well and are easily piped into desired shapes. Quick and easy to whip up, it’s the baking and decorating that take the time in this recipe. But one can still do many things while they’re baking so time essentially is not lost here.

      The goal for meringue is to have a smooth outer shell with no browning and dry interior with a nice crunch. To achieve this, a low and slow baking period is required. I suggest an oven no hotter than 200℉ or the meringue has the tendency to crack. Some recipes will have you place in a hot oven, turn the oven off and allow to sit overnight. I find this is not necessary but they do need enough time to bake to achieve a crunchy lightness. It’s perfectly alright to open the oven and give one a taste to see how they’re coming along when you’re not sure. They won’t fall or flatten just because you opened the door. If need be, bake a little longer till they’re light and hollow sounding, then have fun decorating as desired.

      Lavender White Chocolate Meringues inspired by: Bethcakes Lavender Meringues

      Lavender White Chocolate Meringues
      Print Recipe
        Servings Prep Time
        6-7 dozen 60 minutes
        Cook Time Passive Time
        3 hours 24 hours
        Servings Prep Time
        6-7 dozen 60 minutes
        Cook Time Passive Time
        3 hours 24 hours
        Lavender White Chocolate Meringues
        Print Recipe
          Servings Prep Time
          6-7 dozen 60 minutes
          Cook Time Passive Time
          3 hours 24 hours
          Servings Prep Time
          6-7 dozen 60 minutes
          Cook Time Passive Time
          3 hours 24 hours
          Ingredients
          Servings: dozen
          Instructions
          1. Combine sugar and lavender in a small bowl. Rub lavender buds and sugar together with your fingers to help infuse the lavender flavour into the sugar. Cover tightly and allow to sit at room temperature, preferably overnight. Sift sugar to remove lavender before using.
          2. Preheat oven to 200℉. Arrange 2 oven racks with one in the middle and the second above it. Whip egg whites and cream of tartar until frothy and starting to thicken. Gradually add sugar with mixer running. Once all sugar has been added, continue to beat until stiff peak stage and meringue is glossy, about 8-10 minutes. Add desired food colouring and flavouring and whip just to combine.
          3. Line 2 large baking trays with parchment. Fill a large piping bag fitted with a 446P (10 cm round) tip with meringue and pipe into 1"-1 1/2" kisses, spacing 1" apart on baking tray. To pipe kisses, hold tip vertically 1/2"- 3/4" above tray and squeeze until filling has created a 1"-1 1/2" circle. Stop squeezing and lift up, creating the tail.
          4. Once all meringue has been piped, place trays in oven and bake for 2 1/2-3 hours, checking meringue for doneness at the 2 1/2 hour mark. Once meringues are dry and light with a hollow sound and feeling, turn off oven and allow meringues to remain in oven until completely cooled.
          5. Melt white chocolate in a double boiler or microwave on 30 second intervals until smooth. Dip or decorate meringues in chocolate then decorate with sprinkles if desired.
          Recipe Notes

          Alternatively, you can use lavender flavouring instead of the infused sugar which will eliminate that step.

          Meringues can be piped into any desired shape using other tips if desired.

          I found it difficult to dip the bottom of the meringues into the chocolate without breaking off their tips. I therefore spread an arc of white chocolate onto the side of the meringue and dipped in sprinkles.