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Pavlova help... how far can I make it ahead?

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My office is having a birthday celebration for my boss tomorrow and I've been recruited to create the official dessert. I am planning on making a pavlova because he absolutely loves merengue in all forms. I also thought this would be a great choice because i can bring it in pieces (bottom, cream, berries) and assemble on site. My question is: can i bake it tonight and be safe or do I have to wake up at 4am and bake it tomorrow morning? How should I store and transport the bottom merengue layer? Ziploc bag? Tupperware? Help please!

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  1. I usually keep my pavlovas for 3 days max in a tupperware. Stack them between parchment paper. My recipe calls for vinegar & lemon juice so they usually stay pretty soft inside.

    1. You can bake it overnight in the oven. Extremely low temp. It's the way I always bake meringues or Japonais. I wouldn't make it anymore than a day ahead. The meringue absorbs water from the air and becomes gummy. The tupperware container is a good idea if you can find one big enough. You can transport the meringue in the baking pan (use parchment paper on bottom) with another piece of parchment paper and an inverted baking pan on top for protection. (The broiler pan inverted works well.) Good luck. What kind of berries?

      2 Replies
      1. re: maria lorraine

        Thanks to both of you for your suggestions. I couldn't find a tupperware that was big enough and I don't have a giant cake transporter so I sort of improvised keeping your ideas in mind. I baked it late last night so that I finished it around midnight and then let it cool by setting it (parchment and all) on a cooling rack with a giant steel mixing bowl inverted on top. Then I transported it to work this morning by removing the bowl and putting the entire contraption (pavlova on parchment resting on cooling rack) inside of an XL (several gallons) ziploc bag. It seems to have worked well so far. I made a traditional pavlova and will be topping it with a barely sweetened whipped cream that I flavored with amaretti and then a mix of strawberries, raspberries and blueberries sprinkled with toasted almonds. I hope it's good!

        1. re: LAcupcake

          Boy oh boy I wished I worked with you!

      2. Ask the New Zealand Board - it's the national dessert.