Vegan Pavlova with Strawberry Curd & Licorice Dates
1 1/2 dl (150 ml) aquafaba (chickpea water)
2 1/2 dl (1 cup) powdered sugar
2 tbsp corn starch
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp vanilla powder
500 g fresh strawberries, divided
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp corn starch
1 1/2 lime, juice
pinch of salt
250 ml whipped cream of choice, we used soy
6-8 dates rolled in licorice powder
Prepare by separating the aquafaba from the chickpeas from one can/tetra of pre-cooked chickpeas. Place in the fridge for at least an hour before using.
Set oven to 100’C/210’F, fan mode. Prep two baking sheets lined with parchment paper.
Whisk 150 ml aquafaba on high speed with an electrical whisk, preferably a kitchen assistant, for about 5-10 minutes or until you can flip the bowl upside down without the meringue falling out.
Gradually add the sugar while whisking. Then add corn starch, lemon juice and vanilla. You can lower the speed somewhat to avoid the sugar flying all over the place. Then continue whisking on high speed for another 5 min or so, or until you have a shiny, shapeable meringue.
Divide between the two baking sheets. Use a spoon to form 2 large cake bottoms or 3 smaller ones. You can make a swirling pattern if you like. About 1-1,5 inch thick. Bake in oven (fan mode) for 1,5 – 2 hours. Then turn the oven off and leave the meringue inside to slowly cool. Prepare this a day in advance if you’re in a hurry.
Chop up 350 g of the strawberries. Place in a sauce pan and bring to a simmer. Mash them a little to release their juice. Let simmer for 2-3 minutes, then mix until smooth with a hand-held blender. Add the lime juice, maple syrup, salt and corn starch while whisking. Continue whisking and simmering for about 5-8 minutes or until it has thickened somewhat. Set aside to cool (it will thicken even more once cold).
Assemble: Place one of the meringues on a serving plate. Spread out the cooled strawberry curd, as much as you like. Then add a layer of whipped cream. Place the second meringue on top of that, then another layer of whipped cream. Decorate with the remaining strawberries and chopped licorice dates (regular dates is fine too). Serve immediately.