"" Writer's Wanderings: Australia's Best Dessert - From Guest Blogger Susan Muira

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Australia's Best Dessert - From Guest Blogger Susan Muira

Susan Muira, a friend and fellow traveler and writer has started a blog, Taste The World, that links the love of travel with the love of enjoying different foods of the world. Today she graciously offers this guest post as we travel from Sydney to Perth. I'm looking forward to finding some of this delicious dessert soon!

Thanks Susan!

As a fellow traveler and writer, I was honored when Karen asked me to guest blog while she’s engaged in a walkabout on Australia’s west coast. I can’t wait to hear all about her adventures in Perth, Australia’s sunniest state. It is known for being laid back and easygoing, with plenty of surfing and barbequing going on.

I’m as interested in the food of other countries as I am in the sites. Did you know Australia is known for its world class cheeses? And of course they are also famous for vegemite, a sticky spread that never really caught on in other countries, though the Aussies love it. This dark brown spread is thick like peanut butter, but that’s where the similarity ends. Vegemite is made from leftover brewer’s yeast extract combined with various vegetable and spice additives. Yum – wonder why that never became an international hit!

There is, however; an amazing dessert that you just can’t miss if you visit Australia, and in case such a trip isn’t on your horizon, I’ll give you the recipe. Pavlova was named for the Russian ballerina, Anna Pavlova, who toured the country in 1926. There are many variations of this Aussie favorite, but basically it is a meringue cake with a light, crispy crust covering a marshmellow center and topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit. If that sounds good to you, give it a try!


4 egg whites
1 1/8 cups sugar
1 tsp. Distilled white vinegar
1 tsp. Vanilla extract
1 Tbs. Cornstarch
Whipping cream
Fresh, ripe fruit, peeled and sliced

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat egg white and sugar in large bowl with electric mixer until stiff peaks form. In separate bowl, mix together vinegar, vanilla and cornstarch until smooth. Pour cornstarch mixture into egg white mixture and beat until thick and glossy, about 4 minutes. Cover baking sheet in parchment paper and draw an 8-inch circle in the center. Spoon or pipe mixture inside the circle, to within a little less than an inch from the edge. Place in preheated oven, reduce temperature to 200 degrees and bake 1 hour. Turn oven off and leave Pavlova to cool inside. Whip the cream until soft peaks form. Decorate cooled Pavlova with whipped cream and fresh fruit.

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