festive black forest pavlova




Prep Time


Cook Time

Chocolate and cherries are such a festive combination and this pavlova makes an extravagant centrepiece for your dessert table on Christmas Day. The garnish cherries can be dipped in white chocolate and sprinkles if you wish.



For the festive black forest pavlova

  • 100g dark chocolate
  • 6 egg whites
  • 1½ cups caster sugar
  • 1½ tablespoons cornflour
  • 2 teaspoons malt vinegar
  • Fresh cherries, chocolate shards and sprigs of fresh rosemary, to serve

For the cherry sauce

  • 425g can pitted cherries
  • 2 tablespoons cornflour
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • ¼ cup cherry brandy or rum

For the cherry cream

  • 300ml cream
  • 1 tablespoon cherry brandy or rum


For the festive black forest pavlova

  • To make the Cherry Sauce, tip the cherries and their juice into a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Mix the cornflour and water to make a slurry, then stir it into the simmering cherries, along with the cherry brandy or rum. Remove from the heat and leave to cool.
  • To make the pavlova, preheat the oven to 120°C (100°C fan bake). Line 2 baking trays with baking paper and mark a 20cm circle on each.
  • Melt the chocolate in a bowl set over a pan of simmering water or in short bursts in a microwave, stirring between bursts. Set aside.
  • Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Gradually add the caster sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating between additions. Continue to beat until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is thick and glossy. Fold in the cornflour and vinegar.
  • Divide the mixture between the prepared trays, shaping it to fill the 2 circles evenly.
  • Use a pallet knife to swirl half the melted chocolate through each meringue circle,
  • Bake for 1¼ hours or until dry to the touch. Turn the oven off and allow the meringues to cool in the oven with the door slightly ajar.
  • When ready to serve, make the Cherry Cream by whipping the cream with the cherry brandy or rum until soft peaks form.
  • Place one of the meringues on a serving platter and cover with half the Cherry Cream. Spoon half the Cherry Sauce over the top.
  • Top with the other meringue and the remaining Cherry Cream. Spoon the remaining Cherry Sauce into the centre.
  • Decorate with cherries, chocolate and rosemary.