Raspberry Praline Meringue Cake – A Gluten-Free Dessert

Thanks for all your lovely comments regarding the ladybird cupcakes.  The children in Alfie’s class just loved them but there was one boy who went up to Alfie and said, ‘I have to be honest, I didn’t like the icing; it made me feel sick’.  There’s one in every crowd!  There were no mishaps with the antennas made with wire so that was another plus.  And that was the start of Alfie’s ninth birthday celebrations.

Raspberry Praline Meringue Cake

Raspberry Praline Meringue Cake

Over the weekend we had a family dinner.  It would have been a family dinner if Alfie’s big brother and sister had turned up but they were absent as they both had to work and didn’t tell me until after I’d set the table.  Never mind – my parents arrived to sit in their seats.

Having a wee rest

Having a wee rest

I cooked Alfie’s favourite roast which is a rolled loin of pork with crackle, crispy potatoes cooked in duck fat and a salad (the salad isn’t actually on his list of most favourite things).

Duck fat potatoes

Duck fat potatoes

It’s not a birthday without a cake and so I made a raspberry praline meringue cake that despite Alfie being too full to finish his salad, he somehow found enough space to eat two slices of birthday cake.

Insisting on lighting his own candles!

Insisting on lighting his own candles!

Everything about this cake can be made in advance but it is best to assemble just before serving.  The meringue cakes will crack if you take them out of the oven at the end of the cooking time so just switch the oven off and leave them in there to cool with the oven door closed.  My cakes cracked a little as I had to rush them onto the bench because it was the pork loin’s turn for the oven.  Don’t worry if they do crack; the great thing about pavlova is that you cover it in cream and fruit so no one is going to see any flaws that are actually totally insignificant.

The cake's aglow

The cake’s aglow

And now that the cupcakes have gone to school and now that we’ve had the family dinner, it’s time for the birthday party and organising that event is my challenge for this week.

And the first raspberry falls

And the first raspberry falls

Raspberry Praline Meringue Cake

Serves:  8

Degree of Difficulty:  2/5

Cost:  Meringue is probably one of the most affordable desserts to make.  It’s essentially egg whites and sugar.  The berries can be expensive so I used frozen for the sauce with fresh raspberries to decorate.

  • 175gms (6 oz) toasted almonds
  • 6 egg whites
  • 1 cup castor sugar plus 1 tbspn extra
  • 1 cup light muscovado sugar
  • 1 tbspn cornflour
  • 2 tsps white wine vinegar
  • 600mls (20 oz) thickened cream
  • 600gms (20 oz) frozen raspberries
  • 300gms (10 oz) fresh raspberries

Preheat oven to 140C (280F)

In a food processor, finely chop two-thirds of the almonds.  On a chopping board, coarsely chop the remaining almonds.

Place egg whites into a large, clean, stainless steel bowl and whisk with an electric beater until stiff peaks form.  Mix the two sugars together and add gradually, allowing sugar to dissolve between additions.  Add cornflour and vinegar and continue to beat until mixture is thick and glossy.  Fold in all the almonds.

Line two baking sheets with baking paper.  Spread mixture into 2 x 20cm circles.

Place in oven for 1 hour.  Turn off oven and keep oven door closed.  Allow cakes to cool completely.

Whip cream until stiff peaks form and set aside in the fridge.

For the Raspberry Sauce:

Place frozen raspberries and extra sugar in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat.  Stir until raspberries have softened.  Remove from heat and strain raspberries through a sieve.  Discard seeds.  Blend cornflour with 2 tbspns of water.  Return raspberries to the saucepan and add the cornflour mixture.  Stir until thickened and set aside.

A gluten-free dessert

A gluten-free dessert

To Assemble:

Carefully remove the baking paper and slide one of the cakes onto a serving platter.  Spread with half the cream and half the raspberry sauce.  Carefully slide the remaining cake on top of other cake and spread with remaining cream and raspberry sauce.  Scatter fresh raspberries on top of cake.

Blowing out the candles

Blowing out the candles

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  1. It sounds like that poor boy just isn’t used to rich home made icings. 🙂

    The roast loin of pork and potatoes made my mouth water. And I’m tempted to do something on a smaller scale to your meringue cake with 2 egg whites in my fridge even though I was going to make coconut macaroons before I saw this.

  2. What a lucky boy! So glad the antennae on the cup cakes were safely navigated by all.

  3. How very delicious! I really miss family dinners…

  4. Happy birthday Alfie! I beautiful meringue and love the crackle on that pork and amazing potatoes. I bet he loved his bday dinner.

  5. Aww happy birthday Alfie! Love this cake…my brother just went gluten free because of his Crohns disease…I think I’ll try making this for him sometime! You always have the best looking food on your page 🙂

  6. Happy birthday Alfie! I would love your meringue cake as my birthday cake especially after such a yummy birthday dinner. Looking forward to reading about the party!
    P.S. How did Archie’s 21st go in the end?

  7. Charlie, between your cute cupcakes and this pavlova, Alfie must have felt sufficiently loved and honored. Smiling that he had room for two slices of cake, despite being too full to finish his salad!

  8. A three part birthday is the best kind, and it sounds like Alfie’s parts 1 and 2 have gone splendidly. What a gorgeous cake this is, and so perfect for summer! I’m not sure what to think of that classmate who didn’t like the icing though – did he *really* have to be honest and share that insight?!

  9. So beautiful, Charlie!!! So much cake in my blog reading list currently I’m itching to bake!

  10. Ooh, a pavlova! It isn’t a BBQ or party in Australia without one of these! Yours looks perfect.

  11. What a lucky boy he is to have these delicious meals. That little boy that didn’t like the icing should perhaps keep his opinion to himself. I know an adult like that and I avoid them at all costs 😛

  12. What a great birthday dinner – all our favourites. Great Pav – love the look of the raspberry sauce. Happy birthday Alfie enjoy all the celebrations.

  13. Alfie is on a roll with his birthday cakes . And he has very good taste choosing roast pork with crackling as his favourite meal – I order that every single time I see it on a menu and it’s my designated last meal if I ever get to choose!!!

  14. You’ve had a big week Charlie. That birthday cake looks divine. Lucky boy

  15. Oh my gosh, I want you to make MY birthday cake!!! Gorgeous, Charlie!!! xo

  16. What a wonderful family birthday. 9 years old – nearly all grown up. No more baby.

    That’s a very fancy birthday cake and honestly, lighting the candles and playing with fire is the best bit!

  17. This looks like a fabulous birthday meal. Amazing crackling, it looks so delicious. GG

  18. Happy birthday to Alfie! Miss A will be absolutely jealous of his cake. She’s been asking me to make this for ages now. I really should just make it for her. There’s no good reason not to. It looks like a great time for all – but especially the birthday boy. Good luck with the additional party plans!

  19. Wow, that cake looks amazing! Alfie is one lucky kid!! 😉 xo

  20. Charlie this cake is stunning! I love how the raspberry rolls down the sides. Alfie looks quite please with your creation. I’d love this myself. Before you know it he’ll be off to college – time flies. Happy Birthday to your little boy and many, many more.

    Great recipe and photos.

  21. I adore pavlova and this one would likely be my favourite, you do such a beautiful job with them! They look so lovely and fresh!
    That kid who made the comment needs his head examined, but a strange thing to say for a free cupcake. I hope Alfie responded with “You’re welcome”.

  22. Alfie’s cupcakes were cute, the cake is gorgeous.

  23. OOh yum! Happy birthday to Alfie – I would have had 2 slices of this myself – no matter how much I ate before – stunning and now I wish I had a piece! 🙂

  24. I drooled over the title alone, and then I saw the cake! I would never have thought to have served it to my son for his birthday, but how perfect it is in every way! I wish someone had made it for me on my day!And Alfie–he seems to be sprouting up before our very eyes.

  25. There’s always room for cake! Is a separate stomach to the salad stomach you know. Can’t wait to read about the party!

  26. Oh those raspberries on top look heavenly!

  27. Little boys. You gotta love em. Happy birthday to your precious Alfie.

    His cake looks absolutely delicious.

  28. It looks to me like young Alfie is living the dream! What a splendid birthday for him.

  29. beautiful cake – my sylvia has theories about how much room main course takes up and how little dessert takes up which she says is why she can eat cake even when she can’t fit in dinner – good luck with the party

  30. Happy Birthday to Alfie, my god those potatoes in duck fat look awesome, have a great week 🙂

  31. I love that Alfie was too full for salad but not for cake. 🙂 It reminds me of a little girl I babysat who informed me that she couldn’t eat her sandwich because her tongue hurt, and she thought she needed a cookie. 🙂

  32. Alfie is one lucky kid to have a mother like you! That cake is incredible and I would love that for my birthday! Also love those duck fat roasted potatoes. YUM!

  33. What a delightful cake! I have never made a meringue cake, but isn’t it a lovely idea! I am sure that Aflie had a wonderful birthday and felt very special for all the attention and the lovely dinner. I wonder how he responded to the child who criticized the frosting on the cupcakes. You’re right about there being one in every crowd! Happy birthday to a very special young man!

  34. Your Alfie sure is lucky to have you for a mom! I saw your adorable cupcakes on Instagram. So cute! You meringue cake is gorgeous! Oh, and no more treats for that little bugger that didn’t like your frosting!! 🙂

  35. G’day and Happy Birthday again Alfie, true!
    I am sure when Alfie gets older he will remember how special him mum made him feel making cupcakes and this lovely raspberry praline meringue cake Charlie!
    Cheers! Joanne

  36. What a fantastic favourite meal! I love crispy roast potatoes too and think I would also want to enjoy two pieces of cake.
    Looking forward to the party post.
    Have a super day Charlie.
    🙂 Mandy xo

  37. I think birthdays definitely deserve to be spread out as far as possible too Charlie! With Archie and Arabella missing that just means more deliciousness for Alfie, so I’m sure he didn’t miss them that much after all- especially if the birthday boy got their shared of crackle 🙂 Wonderful dessert, I’d love a huge piece for dinner please! Xox

  38. That is one decadent-looking birthday cake, Charlie. What a great way to mark the occasion! I had to laugh at Alfie being too full for salad yet finding room for 2 pieces of birthday cake. That was either a very filling salad or an extremely light cake. 😉 I can’t wait to read about his birthday party.

  39. Alfie is adorable! Hope he had a great birthday. Looks like there was a feast with wonderful food and a gorgeous cake. Absolutely stunning Charlie! Now, Laith would forego the potatoes and eat the salad. He is crazy about salads (I probably should be happy but he gives me hell with carbs, no rice, no pasta, no potatoes)
    He would also eat 2 slices of this cake, I would eat 3.

  40. happy birthday alfie! what a lucky boy he is! i could do with some duck fat potatoes!

  41. Wow,the raspberrycake looks irresistible.
    Definitly, nothing beats a family dinner for a celebration.
    Happy belated Birthday, Alfi!

  42. Great looking cake! When I was a child, I always wanted my mother to bake my birthday cake as “tall as my head.” This would have been perfect!

  43. Alfie has excellent taste in favorite foods…this looks like the best kind of birthday meal. And that cake, oh my goodness, how beautiful!

  44. That cake looks oh so delicious and what a beauty it is! Wishing I could reach in and grab a slice!

  45. He is one very lucky little boy even if his brother and sister weren’t there. The other day my mother rang me to say that Dario had just had lunch with her. I thought he was downstairs in his bedroom. How he had got to the other side of town and had lunch with her without me knowing, I will never know. We never really know what these kids get up to.

  46. Ohhh Happy Birthday Alfie 🙂 Sorry I missed it a couple of days ago hehe you’re so lucky to have a mum like Charlie who makes you homemade cakes!! It’s pretty awesome! 🙂

  47. Oh my God, that roast looks amazing! The cake looks fantastic too, but I’ve got a special plate in my heart (belly?) for crispy crackling!

    Hope he had a great birthday – it sure looks like he had some great food.

    I say that if there was just one boy in the whole class who wasn’t a fan of the icing then that’s a huge success, especially knowing how finicky kids can be with food!

  48. Everything on your post looks incredible but that cake is everything for me right now! You had me at the pile of raspberries on top. Seems like it was a fabulous time!

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