Tropicana Eton Mess

My daughter has raved about a pavlova she made a year ago with a rich mango and passionfruit curd topping. She acquired the recipe for the Mango and Passionfruit curd from Lorraine Elliott’s Not Quite Nigella. Lorraine makes pavlovas, all towers of gooey loveliness and there are at least 6 fabulous versions to consider. I often prefer to make mini pavlovas or meringues so that I can string out the exquisite curd a little longer. As the mango season is at its height ( but not for long) I decided it was time to give her recipe a try. It is also a very fitting dessert for Australia Day on January 26th.

Daisy samples the Eton Mess with Mango and Passionfruit curd
Daisy samples the Eton Mess with Mango and Passionfruit curd

Little Daisy, the cheffa, was my main tester. Daisy likes to watch cooking videos to improve her cooking skills and always helps in the kitchen, with her own stool and special knife. She is genuinely my best kitchen hand, her enthusiasm spurs me on.

Little crispy meringues with gooey centres

 Little meringues are easy to whip up and store well in a tin- ready for any young customer with an appetite. They can be served as individual greedy sized desserts, or smashed up and made into an Eton Mess.

The OTT Tropicana Mess
The OTT Tropicana Mess

The small meringue recipe

  • four egg whites
  • 1 cup (220g) caster sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons cornflour
  • 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • Preheat oven to 150ºC. Line two small baking trays with baking paper. Whisk egg whites in an electric mixer until soft peaks form, then add the sugar gradually and beat until they turn glossy. Remove bowl from stand and stir through the cornflour and vinegar.
  • Use a piping bag to make 6 rounds of meringue with slightly walled sides, or make freeform shapes, as pictured above, if you intend to smash them up for Eton Mess. Leave at least 3 cm between each meringue to allow for spreading.
  • Reduce the oven to 120ºC and bake for 40 minutes. Turn off the oven and allow them to cool completely. Store in an airtight tin for up to 2 weeks.
Eton Mess, smashed merigue, cream and mango and passionfruit curd
Eton Mess, smashed meringue, cream, mango and passionfruit curd

Lorraine Elliott’s Mango and Passionfruit Curd

Makes about 3 cups of curd

  • 5 egg yolks
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 125g butter, cut into cubes
  • ½ cup passionfruit pulp (about 5 passionfruit)
  • ½ cup mango pulp, processed (about 1 large mango)

  •  Heat a heavy bottomed saucepan on medium heat (4 out of 10 where 10 is the hottest temperature). Place the yolks and sugar and stir until combined. Add the cubes of butter and allow to melt. Stir just stir enough so that it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.

  •  Add the passionfruit and mango pulp to the pan and allow to thicken stirring occasionally. It will take about 10-15 minutes to thicken and will thicken further upon cooling. Store in sterilised jars.

To Assemble the Desserts

Use parfait glasses or bowls. Roughly smash the meringue and layer with cream, the curd, fresh passionfruit, and repeat, topped with fresh mint leaves.

Other components are whipped cream, more passionfruit, sliced mango, and other tropical fruits in season. Daisy said no to banana so take heed of her advice.

Daisy and her mother share another!

I sent all the components home with five-year old Daisy: the meringues, the whipped cream and the curd so she can practice her assembling to impress her father and sisters.

Daisy's version, made when she went home. Pic taken on her mother's phone.
Daisy’s version, made when she went home. Pic taken on her mother’s phone.

Footnote: Today Lorraine has written up this sweet curd again- check her updated recipe here too.

23 thoughts on “Tropicana Eton Mess”

  1. This was a favourite standby dessert over summer in our house too, especially when there are little girls around, but now too b. humid to make meringue! Lovely pics of Daisy and the delicious dessert. (sounds like a Roald Dahl title.)

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  2. I love meringues/pav as it is one of the few things that I can cook that works in my ‘toy’ oven. I’m planning a chocolate pav for Australia day. What a wonderful time for Daisy, she must feel so special when she takes the ‘loot’ back to demonstrate and share her prowess. I need to take note of all these fabulous tips for grand-parenting that you have 🙂

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    1. When you get a little one who likes eating everything, and would prefer to stand on a stool and be involved in the cooking ( from the age of two), you have met your match. This little cheffa ( that’s what she calls herself) is one of five- the others only showed interest when making cakes and biscuits. Daisy likes to make savoury food mostly and samples all the ingredients along the way. She knows all her herbs- I can send her to the garden to get stuff- and she thinks it’s really exciting to sort out a spice drawer.

      Liked by 1 person

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