Heat the oven to 120C/250F/gas mark 1/2. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
Using an electric hand mixer, beat the egg whites, salt, vinegar and vanilla on a high speed until soft peaks form.
Whisk 200g of the sugar and the cornflour together by hand and add half to the frothy egg whites. Use the electric hand whisk to whip until very stiff, then add the remaining half. Whisk until stiff again, then add the remaining 100g of sugar. Whisk until smooth and glossy.
Spoon 6 large swoops of the meringue on to your baking tray, 4cm apart.
Bake in the oven for about 2 hours, then check the meringues. Remove from the oven when dry and firm. It should be possible to peel them gently off the paper. If they stick to the paper they’re no ready. Cool completely when cooked.
To assemble, place the meringues on a large serving plate or individual plates. Put a spoonful of respberry jam on each and then a generous dollop of cream.
Quarter the strawberries and toss with the caster sugar. Leave to macerate for a few minutes while you halve the passion fruits. To save time, you can prepare the strawberries up to 2 hours in advance and keep them in the fridge.
Stir the strawberries and divide between the pavlovas. Scoop out half a passion fruit on to each and serve.
— TIPS —
Making meringue can be intimidating, but it needn’t be when you know a few tricks and you have the right tools. An electric hand whisk or free-standing mixer is always going to make meringue-making easier. Meringue can take an incredible amount of beating (unlike cream) so it is hard to overdo it. The salt and cornflour help to stabilize the whites and keep them from ‘breaking’
Meringues can be made up to 5 days in advance and kept in an airtight container.
The trick to making successful meringues is to open the oven door a few times during the baking to let the condensation out. The idea is to dry out the exterior of the meringues while keeping the inside moist.