Delia's Strawberry and vanilla pavlova


For the meringue:
3 large fresh egg whites
175g golden caster sugar
400g fresh ripe strawberries, hulled
1 dessertspoon golden caster sugar

For the filling:
1 x 250g tub mascarpone, chilled
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract vanilla extract
1 x 200g natural French fromage frais
1 rounded dessertspoon golden caster sugar

Icing sugar to dust

Preheat the oven to 150ºC gas mark 2

Equipment:  You will need a medium-baking sheet lined with a liner


For the meringue, place the egg whites (link to Video Techniques – Perfect Eggs Whites) in a large clean bowl and whisk them until they form stiff peaks (it's very important, though, not to over-whisk the egg whites because, if you do, they will start to collapse).

Now start to whisk in the 175g sugar, about a tablespoon at a time, whisking after each addition until all the sugar is in. Now take a metal tablespoon and spoon about one third of the meringue mixture on to the prepared baking sheet, forming a circle about 20 cm in diameter.

Then spoon round blobs next to each other so that they join up to form a circle all around the edge. Now, using the tip of a skewer, make little swirls in the meringue. Pop it in the oven, then immediately turn down the heat to 140°C , gas mark 1 and leave it for 1 hour. Then turn the heat right off but leave the Pavlova inside the oven until it's completely cold.

When you’re ready to serve the Pavlova (or up to an hour ahead) whisk the filling ingredients together. Now put one third of the strawberries into a mini chopper or a processor along with one dessertspoon of sugar, then sieve into a bowl. Halve the remaining strawberries leaving the small ones whole.

Then lift the Pavlova from the liner and place it on a serving dish or a stand.  Next spoon the vanilla cream into the centre, arrange the strawberries on top and dust with a little sifted icing sugar and pour the purée over just before serving, cut into wedges.

Note: any soft fruit can be used; strawberries, raspberries and redcurrants are particularly nice and in the winter it works really well with passion fruit.


Recipe adapted from Complete Cookery Course published by BBC Books 1978 © Delia Smith 2013 

To watch this recipe video, click here 

See also: Delia's Meringues with Vanilla Mascarpone Cream and Lemon Curd

For more information about Delia's online cookery school go to www.deliaonline.com





  • Preparation time: 15 minutes
  • Cooking time: 1 minutes
  • Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes, plus cooling

Serves: 6

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