How to turn overripe fruit into an eye-catching pudding – recipe

Overripe fruit is still great when blanched and served with breakfast cereal, porridge, or yogurt, but if you like pushing the boat out, you can opt for this magnificent pavola.

£1.17 billion worth of fruit, vegetables and bread is wasted every year by Brits, according to Sainsbury's research, which is the equivalent of every household throwing away nearly three items a week. But even overripe fruit that no longer tastes good eaten raw is delicious when blanched and eaten atop a magnificent pavlova.

Pavlova with quince, chocolate and hazelnuts

Overripe fruit that is no longer delicious eaten raw can be blanched and served simply with breakfast cereal, porridge or yogurt, or for dessert with cream. It can also be recycled into this show-stopping no-waste pavlova made with aquafaba instead of egg whites. Meringue is a sweet treat made by turning something that would normally go to waste, namely aquafaba, into a delicious dessert – especially when topped with stewed seasonal fruit and melted chocolate. This recipe is adapted from one of my cookbooks Eat for Fun, People & Planet.

  • For meringues
  • aquafaba 170ml
  • 1 tsp cream of tartar
  • 225 grams of caster sugar

  • For honey boiled quince
  • 250 ml honey, or other sweetener (eg sugar, maple syrup or date syrup)
  • Peel and juice of 1 lemon
  • ½ cinnamon stick (optional)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract (optional)
  • 500g quince, or other ripe seasonal fruit

For toppings

  • 100g good quality dark chocolate
  • 250ml double cream
  • 100g hazelnuts, toasted

Place the aquafaba in a ceramic bowl and beat at high speed for five minutes, until stiff peaks form. Beat cream of tartar, if using, and caster sugar, a third at a time, until dough forms very stiff peaks.

Spread the meringue into 20cm wide discs on a large baking sheet lined with greaseproof paper and bake in a 130C (110C fan)/260F/gas ¾ oven for three hours. Turn off the oven, close the door and let the meringues cool for at least another two hours.

Meanwhile, place 800ml of water in a large saucepan with the honey (or other sweetener) and lemon zest and juice, and add half a cinnamon stick and vanilla extract, if using. Core the quince, then cut into slices, adding to the pan as you go (the quince skin is fine to eat). Heat the pot to a gentle simmer and let it cook for about two hours (alternatively, to save energy, cook in the slow cooker for four to five hours). Remove the quince pieces and set aside to cool, then, if necessary, bring the remaining liquid to a boil, reduce it to a syrup and allow it to cool.

Break the chocolate into small pieces, place in a heatproof bowl set over a pot of hot, freshly boiled water, and stir until melted.

Place the meringue on a plate, top with whipped double cream and quince pieces, drizzle over the chocolate sauce and finish with a sprinkling of toasted hazelnuts.

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