Lemon Pavlovas

  • Servings: 10

Source: Martha Stewart Weddings, Summer 2007

Ingredients

For the Candied Lemon Slices

  • 2 to 4 cold lemons, cut into paper-thin rounds with a mandoline (30 slices)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups water

For the Lemon Curd

  • 8 large egg yolks
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup lemon juice (from about 4 lemons)

For the Meringues

  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1 cup sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Make the candied lemon slices: Prepare an ice-water bath. Bring a medium saucepan of water to a boil. Remove from heat, and add lemon slices. Let stand 1 minute to soften. Using a slotted spoon, transfer lemon slices to ice-water bath.

  2. Cut a round of parchment paper to fit inside a large shallow saucepan, and poke a hole in center; set aside. Bring sugar and 2 cups water to a boil in pan, stirring to dissolve sugar. Reduce heat to medium-low. Transfer lemon slices to syrup, and place parchment round directly on surface. Simmer until rinds are translucent, about 35 minutes. Remove from heat, and let lemon slices cool in syrup. Use immediately, or refrigerate in syrup in an airtight container up to 1 week.

  3. Make the meringues: Preheat oven to 225 degrees. Place egg whites, sugar, and salt in the heatproof bowl of a mixer set over a pan of simmering water. Whisk until hot and sugar has completely melted. Attach bowl to mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, and beat on medium speed until soft peaks form. Raise speed to high, and beat until mixture is cool and forms stiff, glossy peaks, about 9 minutes. Beat in lemon juice and vanilla.

  4. Using a rubber spatula, spread meringue into twelve 3-inch-diameter mounds on parchment-lined baking sheets. Form a well in center and peaks around edges. Bake until edges are crisp and centers have just set, 40 to 50 minutes. Let cool on sheets on wire racks. Meringues can be stored in an airtight container in low humidity overnight.

  5. Make the lemon curd: Place egg yolks, sugar, salt, and lemon juice in the heatproof bowl of a mixer set over a pan of simmering water. Whisk until mixture has thickened and whisk leaves a trail, about 6 minutes. Pour through a fine sieve into a bowl. Place plastic wrap directly on surface of lemon curd, and refrigerate until cold, about 1 hour (or up to 12 hours). Whisk before using.

  6. To serve, mound 2 tablespoons lemon curd in center of each meringue, and top with 3 strained candied lemon slices.

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