- Preheat the oven to 140°C/275°F/Gas Mark 1. Draw a 23cm circle on a large sheet of baking parchment and place, pencil side down, on a baking sheet (if you lay it pencil side up, the line will come off on the meringue). Put the egg whites in a large, roomy bowl, add the salt and whisk until stiff. Add a couple of tablespoons of the sugar and whisk thoroughly. Add another couple of tablespoons of sugar and whisk again. Continue until all the sugar has been used and the mixture is stiff and glossy. Whisk in the cornflour and white wine vinegar.
- Stir in the food colouring, lightly swirling until the mixture is marbled with colour. Spoon the meringue on to the parchment and spread out to fill the circle. Build up the sides into peaks to hold the filling.
- Bake for 1 hr until a pale biscuit colour. Remove from the baking parchment and transfer to a wire rack. Leave to cool completely.
- Assemble the pavlova. Whisk the cream until lightly thickened. Add the icing sugar and rosewater, and continue to whisk until thickened. Just before serving, spoon the cream mixture into the meringue case and pile the berries on top. Scatter over the rose petals.
Top tips for the perfect pavlova:
* Use baking parchment, as it is easier to remove from the cooked meringue than greaseproof.
* Use eggs at room temperature as they will whisk more easily. Older eggs will whisk up to a larger volume than fresh eggs.
* The cornflour and white wine vinegar help to stabilise the meringue and stop it from collapsing, so do not be tempted to leave it out!
* Plastic bowls are a definite no-no, as they really do hold on to grease.
* When separating eggs, crack each white into a cup before pouring into the bowl just in case you break the yolk. Egg yolk is basically full of fat and will stop your whites from whipping up.