I was very excited when Redbelly Citrus gave me a whole box of their amazing blood oranges. I ducked out and bought some Holbrook Paddock free range eggs especially to make a pavlova roll with blood orange curd. This is what I came up with. It is truly irresistible. I understand that the sweetness of blood oranges varies with the seasons. I’ve had many in the past that were quite tart. But these were beautifully sweet. I didn’t want to use too much sugar in the curd which turned out rich and luscious. By contrast, the meringue is sweet, light and fluffy. Good quality whipped cream rounds out the flavours beautifully. Last but not least, the glorious colour of the blood orange is showcased fresh segments atop the pavlova roll. If you feel like it, you can top the meringue with crunchy lengths of candied orange zest, but these are entirely optional. I’ve tried to balance out the recipe for minimal wastage. Eight blood oranges should suffice, and you’ll need half a dozen eggs.
Blood orange curd
1 ½ cups blood orange juice
4 blood oranges, finely grated zest of*
6 egg yolks**
200 grams butter
½ cup caster sugar
*reserve these oranges for the segments you’ll need for serving
**use the whites for the pavlova roll
6 egg whites
1 ¾ cups caster sugar
2 teaspoons cornflour
2 teaspoons white vinegar
300 millilitres whipping cream
4 blood oranges, segments of***
candied orange zest (optional)
***cut the peel away from the oranges you zested for the curd, then cut segments of the fruit from the membrane.
To make the blood orange curd, place all the ingredients in a saucepan and cook on a medium heat until the mixture thickens and will coat the back of a spoon. Set aside to cool.
To make the meringue, line a 40x30cm slice tray with baking paper, being sure to line all the sides. Preheat the oven to 160oC. Beat the egg whites to soft peaks. Gradually beat in the caster sugar until it is fully dissolved and the mixture is thick and glossy. Pour the mixture into the lined tray and bake for 20 minutes or until the top firms up. Remove the pavlova from the oven and leave it for ten minutes to cool. Place a fresh sheet of baking paper on top of the meringue, then lay over a tea towel. Use the tea towel to flip the tray over onto the bench. Peel off the bottom paper and spread the meringue with the blood orange curd. Using the tea towel and paper to help you, carefully roll the meringue as tightly as you can, while gently pulling the baking paper away from the top. Transfer to the fridge for the lemon curd to set.
To serve, cut away off any untidy edges from the roll and transfer it to a serving plate. Whip the cream to soft peaks. Dollop the cream onto the rolled pavlova. You might want to spread and shape the cream with a spatula in a tight zigzag motion. Arrange the blood orange segments on top. If you’re using them, scatter over the candied orange zest.