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Orange, cardamom and pistachio pavlova crown recipe

Orange, cardamom and pistachio pavlova crown recipe

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With zesty segments of orange and crushed pistachios this easy Christmas Pavlova is the perfect pud for the big day See method

  • Serves 6
  • 1 hr 20 mins plus cooling and chilling
  • 425 calories / serving
  • Vegetarian
  • Gluten-free


  • 100g demerara sugar
  • 225g caster sugar
  • 4 medium eggs, separated, 2 egg yolks reserved
  • ¼ tsp cream of tartar or 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 8 cardamom pods, 3 lightly crushed, seeds removed from the rest and crushed
  • 20g pistachios, finely crushed
  • 2 oranges
  • 100g extra-thick brandy cream

For the orange curd

  • 100ml fresh orange juice (from roughly 1 orange)
  • 25ml lemon juice (from roughly 1 lemon)
  • 40g unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp cornflour

Each serving contains

  • Energy

  • Fat

    16g 23%
  • Saturates

    8g 41%
  • Sugars

    65g 72%
  • Salt

    0.2g 3%

of the reference intake
Carbohydrate 67.5g Protein 6.4g Fibre 1.1g


  1. Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C and line a large baking sheet with nonstick baking paper. Mix the demerara sugar with 125g caster sugar and spread out on the sheet; bake for 7 mins, then use the paper to carefully pour the sugar into a jug. Reduce the oven to gas 1, 140°C, fan 120°C.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk the egg whites and cream of tartar in a large, non-plastic mixing bowl on a low speed with an electric whisk for 1 min, then increase the speed to medium-high and continue to whisk for 2-3 mins or until stiff peaks form. Still whisking the egg whites, slowly add the warm sugar a little at a time, whisking after each addition until the mixture forms stiff peaks again. Once all the sugar has been incorporated, increase the speed to high and whisk for 5 mins or until very stiff and glossy and the sugar has mostly dissolved. Fold in the ground cardamom seeds.
  3. Spoon just under half the meringue into a large disposable piping bag and cut a 3cm opening; set aside. Spoon the rest of the meringue onto the lined baking sheet in a deep, flat circle (about 18cm). Pipe the remaining meringue in 12 ‘towers’ about 4cm high around the edge to create a strong rim that will hold the filling. Sprinkle the peaks with 10g pistachios and bake for 1 hr. Turn the oven off and leave the meringue inside to cool for at least 2½ hrs (or overnight).
  4. Meanwhile, make the orange curd. Put the orange juice in a saucepan with the lemon juice, butter and 50g caster sugar and heat gently to melt. Increase the heat to medium, bring to a simmer, then remove from the heat.
  5. Whisk the 2 egg yolks and cornflour into a mixing bowl. Slowly pour the juice mixture over the egg mix, whisking continuously until well combined. Return the mixture to the pan and bring to a simmer over a medium heat, whisking all the time. Bubble gently for 1-2 mins until thickened.
  6. Pass through a fine sieve to remove any lumps. Cover with clingfilm (touching the surface of the curd); set aside to cool completely. 
  7. Use a small, sharp knife to top and tail the oranges, then remove the skin and pith. Slice into 5mm rounds; transfer to a bowl with any juice and set aside.
  8. Put the remaining 50g caster sugar in a small saucepan with 50ml water and the crushed cardamom pods. Heat gently to dissolve the sugar, then increase the heat to high and bubble for 3 mins until thickened and syrupy. Set aside to cool for 15 mins, then pour over the orange segments. Cover and chill for 30 mins or until needed.
  9. To serve, softly whip the brandy cream and swirl through 3 tbsp orange curd; spoon into the middle of the meringue. Top with the remaining curd and the orange slices and scatter with the remaining pistachios.
See more Christmas Dessert recipes

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