Eat this Word: Pavlova

PavlovaWHAT? Dancer's dessert. Named for the world-famous Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova, this fruit, whipped cream, and meringue dessert is claimed by rival nations. Aussies have long considered it their national dessert, but New Zealanders argue that they invented the Pavlova, and they back up their claim with citations from cookbooks. The dancer toured both countries in the late 1920s. In Perth, Australia, she stayed at the Esplanade Hotel, whose chef, Herbert Sachse, is often credited with creating the dessert some six years later. Supposedly the Pavlova acquired its name after someone proclaimed his dessert was "as light as Pavlova." Others think the name stems from the fact that the ring-shaped meringue resembled Pavlova's frilly, white costume in her most famous role, the Dying Swan. Pavlovas—which are showing up on American tables of late—are traditionally filled with passion fruit. WHERE?

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Staff Recipe: Honeydew Soup

honeydew_427x318 Looking for the perfect way to cap off a summer meal? The recipe for this refreshing and delicately sweet fruit soup comes from JBF vice president, Mitchell Davis, and appeared in his encyclopedic cookbook, Kitchen Sense. The original recipe calls for honeydew melon, but Mitchell also gives a number of variations if you prefer to use cantaloupe, watermelon, or even peaches.

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Recipe: James Beard's Galette Pérougienne

BerriesTry this “wonderfully good” yeast dough-based dessert as the finale to an outdoor summer luncheon. James Beard felt it had “all the virtues of French country cooking – it is simple, inexpensive, and makes thoroughly delicious eating.” Enjoy it with crème fraîche and a combination of summer berries.

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Recipe: James Beard's Galette Pérougienne

BerriesTry this “wonderfully good” yeast dough-based dessert as the finale to an outdoor summer luncheon. James Beard felt it had “all the virtues of French country cooking – it is simple, inexpensive, and makes thoroughly delicious eating.” Enjoy it with crème fraîche and a combination of summer berries.

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Eye Candy: Beard House

Flourless Chocolate Cake

Plates of flourless chocolate cakes with dark chocolate–Grand Marnier truffle centers, milk chocolate domes, almond tuiles, and almond cream line the Beard House kitchen counter during Rossano Giannini's Tuscan dinner. May 15, 2009, The Beard House, NYC (Photo by Erin Gleeson)

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Eye Candy: Beard House

Almond Shortbread with Vanilla Mascarpone and Cherry Compote

Anne Burrell's almond shortbread with vanilla mascarpone and cherry compote—the finale to a menu prepared by the team at Centro Vinoteca. May 20, 2008, The Beard House, NYC (Photo by Joan Garvin)

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Recipe: Coconut–Cardamom Rice Pudding with Rhubarb and Kumquats

(Photo by Kent Miller)

(Photo by Kent Miller)

A toasty, creamy mound of rice pudding hugged by a delicate shell, this lovely dessert gets an extra boost from the tartness of rhubarb and kumquats. Prepared by Chanterelle's Kate Zuckerman at the Beard Awards, it was one of our favorite dishes served at the reception. Luckily, Zuckerman was kind enough to share the recipe with us.

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