Cardamom Fig Pavlova with Rose, Honey, and Pistachios
One morning last month, I woke up from a productive night of dreaming with 5 fully conceptualized Pavlova recipes worked out in my head. I got up, made a grocery list, donned my mask and bought the stuff I needed.
I don’t mess around when it comes to Pavlova, LOL. We made 5 Pavlovas in 3 days. Yeah, we ate a LOT of Pavolva that week. It was GLORIOUS. Yum!
Spice isn’t something I tend to add to Pavlovas, for whatever reason. I use cinnamon in my Bananas Foster Pavlova, but that’s about it. So, we were both very much looking forward to seeing how this was going to turn out.
We love figs - weirdly, I don’t have many fig recipes on the blog. Grilled Halloumi Salad with Peaches and Figs, Brie en Croute with Prosciutto, Honey Pear Sauce, and Figs, and Gluten-Free Fig Newtons is the lot of it, for now. Whoops.
Cardamom Fig Pavlova
This year, we haven’t really been able to visit any of our favourite Turkish restaurants - they’re all at the far end of Toronto, and we visit when we’re en route to a concert or event. Remember when that was a thing? 🙂
As a result, we’ve been slacking off on getting our honey / pistachio / cardamom / etc fix this year. I wouldn’t doubt that all had some part to play in this Pavlova working itself up in my dream!
The rose water addition surprised me. I’m not a fan of rose flavoured foods in general, but this actually worked really well. It didn’t taste like “eating perfume”, unlike most instances of rose food I’ve tried. It just accents the cardamom, figs, pistachio, and honey in a really beautiful way.
We’ve made some pretty amazing Pavlovas over the years, but not have felt so bougie and decadent as this one did. I could definitely see this becoming a holiday or NYE tradition..
Assuming we can find figs around that time, anyway. I think the season is over by then, though.
Not that we were at ALL bougie, eating our Cardamom Fig Pavlova in our Pjs, on the couch, watching DS9.
While this Pavlova has a LOT going on, the figs are kind of the crowning glory of it all. You can use whatever figs you like best, or can get your hands on. Look for ripe, fragrant figs that aren’t mushy.
You can use fresh, raw figs - as pictured throughout this post - or you can roast them. We’ve done it both ways.
How to Roast Figs
Roasting figs is easy! To do so, line a baking sheet with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 350.
As the oven is heating, slice up your figs. We’ll usually quarter them, you may want to slice them smaller - if using a bigger variety - or just cut them in half, if using a small variety of figs.
Arrange them on the lined baking sheet, drizzle with a bit of honey. If you’d like, you can sprinkle a bit of cardamom over the figs as well.
Roast for 25 minutes.
A Note on The Sugar
Super fine / castor sugar is granulated sugar, just ground down much finer than regular granulated sugar. It is NOT powdered / confectioners / icing sugar!
Castor / Super fine sugar is usually sold near the rest of the sugars, in the baking aisle. It’s usually in small boxes, sometimes resembling milk cartons.
If you aren’t able to find actual super fine sugar, you can process regular granulated sugar in your food processor until fine. Measure AFTER you process!
Personally, I don’t buy super fine sugar anymore. I did before I had a food processor, but I don’t find it worth the up charge. It’s SO easy to make!
- Eggs are easiest to crack when cold, and easiest to whip when they’re at room temperature. Plan around this knowledge!
- Be EXTREMELY careful to not get any egg yolk into the whites, or the eggs will not whip up. Even beyond cracking the eggs,, be very careful to use a very clean bowl and mixer - grease is your enemy here.
- Add your sugar SLOWLY, as you’re beating the egg whites. You don’t want to overwhelm the structure of the egg whites as you’re building that structure!
- Once your Pavlova is in the oven, don’t even open the oven door until several hours after you turn the oven off. Patience is a virtue!
- Wait until right before you plan to serve the Pavlova to whip the cream turn the meringue into a full Pavlova. Once you put the whipped cream on, you’ll want to serve it immediately.
On a related note: Pavlova doesn’t last well as leftovers, so be sure to eat all of it in one sitting. It won’t be difficult!
- If your meringue is not cracked by the time you take it out of the oven, it likely crack at some other point, and will almost certainly crack when you start garnishing. Don't worry, this is totally normal for a Pavlova, no one will notice or care!
More Pavlova Recipes
Do you love Pavlovas like we do? Awesome! I have several more super tasty Pavlova recipes for you...
As an aside, if you're interested in gluten-free cooking and baking, you should definitely check out my gluten-free cookbooks: Beyond Flour: A Fresh Approach to Gluten Free Cooking & Baking, and the sequel... Beyond Flour 2. You can order them right here on my website, through Amazon, or through any major bookseller.
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Now, on to that Cardamom Fig Pavlova Recipe!
Cardamom Fig Pavlova
- 4 Large Egg Whites
- Pinch Salt
- 1 cup Super Fine / Castor Sugar *
- ½-1 teaspoon Cardamom
- 2 teaspoon Vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon Rose water
- 1 ¼ cup Heavy Cream
- 1-2 tablespoon Granulated Sugar optional
- ¼ teaspoon Cardamom
- ¼ teaspoon Rose water
- 6 Fresh Figs Optionally roasted.
- ½ cup Pistachios, shelled
- 2 tablespoon Honey
- Get ready: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking (cookie) sheet with parchment paper, and set aside. Fit your electric mixer with the whisk attachment.
- Remove eggs from fridge, separate out the whites, and allow to warm to room temp (about 5 minutes).
- In your mixer bowl, beat egg whites together with salt until glossy peaks form.
- Slowly add in the sugar, and continue whipping until stiff peaks form. Turn off mixer, remove bowl.
- Sprinkle cardamom, vinegar, cornstarch, and rose water over meringue, gently fold in till combined.
- Heap meringue onto the center of your baking sheet.
- Use a spatula to spread the meringue out to approximately an 8-9″ circle. If you want to get really fancy, put the meringue into a pastry bag and pipe it out as a mass of swirls that form your 8″ circle! It’s really up to you!
- Put the baking sheet into your oven, and turn the temperature down to 250 degrees. Bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes.
- Once your timer goes off, turn the oven off and let the meringue cool in the oven for several hours. The baking of the meringue can be done the day before, if needed!
- Just before serving, whip the heavy cream.I like my pavlovas a little sweeter, so I add about 2 tablespoon of sugar – add as much or as little as you want. Purists may not want to sweeten the cream at all! I also like to add a little flavoring, again – optional
- Once heavy cream is whipped to the desired thickness, add the cardamom and rose water, mix until well incorporated.
- Mound the whipped cream on your pavlova, and top with quartered figs and pistachios.
- Drizzle with honey and serve immediately!