Baharat, also known as Lebanese Seven Spice or Advieh, has become one of the many ‘go-to’ spice blends along with Ras el Hanout and Chermoula. Herbie, always up to date or ahead with spice trends, was asked to contribute this article to Australian Gourmet Traveller in 1999. Yes, 24 years ago! This is the article: Legendary spice merchant and blender, Ian (Herbie) Hemphill, has
Christmas Pavlova with Spiced Syrup
This stunning pavlova has become a firm Herbie’s family favourite. Enjoy all the flavours of Christmas with our festive version of this ubiquitous Aussie dessert. Make bite sized or individual pavlovas, or buy ready made shells for a quick and easy dessert at any time. The syrup makes a lovely gift too!
- 6 large free-range egg whites
- 270g (1 1/4 cups) caster sugar
- 1 tbsp cornflour, sifted
- 1 tsp Herbie’s Mixed Spice
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp Herbie’s Vanilla Extract
- 1 Herbie’s Vanilla Bean, split lengthways
- 4 Herbie’s Cardamom Pods, bruised
- 1 Herbie’s Whole Star Anise
- 1 Herbie’s Cinnamon Quill
- 225g (1 cup) soft brown sugar
- 125ml (1/2 cup) Pedro Ximinez Sherry
- 125ml (1/2 cup) water
- 300ml thickened cream, whisked until soft peak
- 2 plums, cut into wedges
- 10 whole red cherries
- 1–2 tablespoons of pomegranate seeds
- 2 fresh figs, cut into wedges
- Preheat oven to 120°C. Line a large baking tray with non-stick baking paper.
- In a large clean, dry bowl, use an electric beater to beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Gradually add the sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating constantly, until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is thick and glossy. Add the cornflour, mixed spice, lemon juice and vanilla essence and beat to combine.
- With a large metal spoon, place the meringue mixture in a roughly 20cm disc and then make a shallow well on the top using the back of the spoon.
- Bake for an hour or until the meringue is crisp and dry. Turn the oven off, leaving the meringue inside with the door closed, to cool completely. If making ahead, once cool, store in an airtight container.
- For syrup, combine all ingredients in a saucepan over low heat and stir gently until sugar is dissolved. Increase heat and cook for 8-10 minutes until syrup has reduced and is sticky.
- To serve, top with whipped cream, fruit and syrup. Extra syrup can be served in a jug.
Syrup can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 months. Warm gently before serving.
Keywords: pavlova, Christmas, sweet spices