Cornflour In Pavlova | Ask (2024)

Full question

Hi, what can I use instead of cornflour in pavlovas? I am allergic to corn. Thank you, I would love to try the pavlova recipes.

Our answer

Nigella's pavlovas, such as Lemon Pavlova (from SIMPLY NIGELLA), contain cornflour (cornstarch) in the meringue. The cornflour helps the meringue to stay soft in the centre, to give the contrast of crisp crust and marshmallowy interior. If you are allergic to corn then we understand that you can use potato starch as an alternative.

Make sure that you get potato starch, which is a fine white product that looks similar to cornstarch, and don't confuse it with potato flour, which is more of a cream colour and has a coarser texture. We would suggest substituting it on a 1 for 1 basis (i.e. use 2½ teaspoons of potato starch). Unfortunately we haven't tried this substitution ourselves, so can't guarantee the results.

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Cornflour In Pavlova | Ask (2024)


Cornflour In Pavlova | Ask ›

Our answer. Nigella's pavlovas, such as Lemon Pavlova (from SIMPLY NIGELLA), contain cornflour (cornstarch) in the meringue. The cornflour helps the meringue to stay soft in the centre, to give the contrast of crisp crust and marshmallowy interior.

Do you need cornflour in pavlova? ›

According to *the internet* cornflour helps keep your pavlova base chewy or marshmallowy but I personally disagree. According to Anneka Manning, the role of the cornflour is to “Cornflour stabilises egg whites during baking and prevents weeping by stopping the egg white bonds from tightening too much”.

Can I omit cornstarch in pavlova? ›

While this old family recipe is made without cornstarch, some say it helps to absorb any extra moisture, keeping the meringue completely dry, which could be especially helpful in humid environments. If you'd like to add it, I recommend stirring 2 teaspoons into the sugar before adding it to the egg whites.

What happens if you put too much cornflour in meringue? ›

“Keep in mind, though, that too much cornflour can give the meringue an unpleasant chalkiness – often found in commercially made meringues. Generally, one teaspoon per eggwhite is a good amount to add.” Adding an acidic ingredient also stabilises the eggwhite foam and can prevent problems such as a mixture that splits.

What does cornstarch do in meringue? ›

A secret ingredient: corn starch

Corn starch molecules also provide more hold for meringue. It will be easier to cut and is less likely to weep.

Why is there cornflour in pavlova? ›

Cornflour is used to stabilise the egg whites during baking which reduces the possibility of the pavlova weeping. A rough guide is to use a small amount, approx. one teaspoon per egg white. Too much cornflour will give your pavlova an unpleasant chalky texture.

Can I use corn flour instead of cornstarch in pavlova? ›

@Catija is correct, cornflour and cornstarch are the same, a fine, powdery material made from the endosperm of the corn kernel and used as a thickening agent. If it's not available, you could substitute arrowroot, in the same amount as the recipe calls for the cornstarch.

Why isn t my pavlova crunchy? ›

The secret to a good, crisp pavlova is in the drying of the meringue after cooking. If there is a lot of moisture in the air, whether from humidity or even other cooking you are doing in the kitchen, you will have problems. That's why the “Pavlova Nazi” in me insists on no boiling saucepans during pav time.

What can I use instead of cornflour? ›

Cornflour Substitutes
  • All-Purpose Flour. All-purpose flour is one of the most common ingredients you'll encounter in basic recipes, culinary courses and online cooking classes. ...
  • Whole Wheat Flour. ...
  • Buckwheat Flour. ...
  • Spelt Flour. ...
  • Oat Flour. ...
  • Sorghum Flour. ...
  • Chickpea Flour. ...
  • Brown Rice Flour.
Feb 22, 2024

What can I substitute for corn flour? ›

Here are 15 corn flour substitutes you can use, each with a unique characteristic that makes it an excellent choice for different culinary requirements.
  • Whole Wheat Flour. ...
  • Brown Rice Flour. ...
  • Cornstarch. ...
  • Arrowroot Powder. ...
  • Tapioca Flour. ...
  • Potato Flour. ...
  • Masa Harina. ...
  • Rising Flour.
Aug 14, 2023

What ruins a meringue? ›

7 Common Mistakes to Avoid When Making Meringue
  1. Adding Sugar Too Quickly.
  2. Skipping Cream of Tartar.
  3. Mixing in a Dirty Bowl.
  4. Using Cold Eggs.
  5. Overbeating the Egg Whites.
  6. Squeezing the Air Out.
  7. Baking at Too Low a Temperature.
Mar 19, 2024

Why do you put white wine vinegar in pavlova? ›

In a meringue recipe, such as Nigella's Mini Pavlovas (from Domestic Goddess and on the Nigella website), the vinegar is added as it helps to stabilize the whisked egg whites and helps the meringue mixture to hold the air whisked in to it.

Why is my pavlova weeping? ›

You may be thinking why not just leave the pav in the oven for longer to ensure that the middle is cooked. Unfortunately there is one major problem associated with leaving the pav in the oven for too long - weeping pavs. Weeping can occur when the middle of the pav has dried out too much.

What is the secret to fluffy meringue? ›

Use fresh egg whites. Old egg whites tend to collapse when other ingredients are folded in, and they don't rise well in the oven. Use eggs at room temperature. Cold egg whites tend to reduce meringue volume.

Why add vinegar and cornstarch to meringue? ›

Acid is often added to regular meringues, as well as pavlovas. The cornflour (cornstarch) added at the end of the meringue making is there partly as an additional stabiliser for the egg whites, but also to give the pavlova base its soft, marshmallow centre.

What happens if you forget to put vinegar in a pavlova? ›

It is also possible to use lemon juice or cream of tartar as alternatives. Both of these should be used in the same quantity as the vinegar, for this particular recipe 1 teaspoon. Cream of tartar is sometimes known as tartaric acid.

How can I thicken without cornflour? ›

1. All-purpose flour: You can thicken sauces with all-purpose wheat flour. For every tablespoon of cornstarch, use three tablespoons of flour. Combine raw flour with cold water in a small bowl to form a paste, then add it into the sauce as it's simmering.

What went wrong with my pavlova? ›

Egg whites can be over whisked & sugar will not dissolve in over whisked egg whites. I've noticed on a lot of stand mixers that the stated speed for whisking egg whites is nearly full bore. If you whisk them at this set speed you will not have enough time to add the sugar before the egg whites are over whisked.

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