Pavlova - History of Pavlova
© copyright 2004 by Linda Stradley - United States Copyright TX 5-900-517- All rights reserved. This web site may not be reproduced in whole or in part without permission and appropriate credit given. If you use any of the history information contained below for research in writing a magazine or newspaper article, school work or college research, and/or television show production, you must give a reference to the author, Linda Stradley, and to the web site What's Cooking America.
Photo from Fabulous Foods website
Pavlova (pav-LOH-vuh) - The Pavlova consists a base made of a meringue crust topped with whipped cream and fresh fruits such as kiwis (the fruit!), strawberries, etc. It is considered a fresh fruit pie with a meringue crust.
No one knows who first created the Pavlova. But the name and the recipes first began appearing soon after Russian prima ballerina, Anna Matveyevna Pavlova (1881-1931), toured both Australia and New Zealand in 1926 and Australia again in 1929. Anna Pavlova was considered the greatest ballerina of her time and her visit to New Zealand has been described as "the chief event of 1926." It was said "She does not dance; she soars as though on wings." From this you get the sense that this is a light, airy dessert.
There is a controversary with both Australia and New Zealand. While it has been suggested this dessert was created in New Zealand, it has also become recognized as a popular Australian dish. Both countries claim to have invented this dessert and claim it as their national dish.
In New Zealand, a cookbook published in 1926 by E. Futter titled Home Cookery for New Zealand contained a recipe for "Meringue with Fruit Filling." Although the name Pavlova is not used, the recipe is similar.
1935 - According to chef Herbert (Bert) Sachse of the Hotel Esplanade in Perth, Western Australia, the dessert was originally created as a tea dessert for the Hotel’s afternoon teas. According to the Paxton family legend, the Pavlova was named at a meeting at which Sachse presented the now familiar cake. The family say that either the licensee, the manager, or chef Sachse remarked, “It is as light as Pavlova.” It was then named Pavlova after the great Russian ballerina, Anna Pavlova, who had been a guest of the hotel during her 1929 tour of Australia. In 1973, Herbert Sachse stated in a magazine interview that he sought to improve the Meringue Cake recipe that he found in the Women’s Mirror Magazine on April 2, 1935. The recipe was contributed by a New Zealand resident.
For years controversy has surrounded the Pavlova with both NZ and Australia claiming it as its own, Kiwi News.
Pavlova, Pass the Pav.
Whipping is Pavlovian, by Glen Ralph, an internet web site.