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Gluten Free Daring Bakers Chocolate Pavlovas with Chocolate Mascarpone Mousse Recipe

I’ve been skulking around Daring Bakers Challenges for quite some time now. Watching and drooling over creations made by these people.  Always a spectator, never a participant.

Well, I do not like to live my life as a spectator; I prefer a full on charge at life. It is messier, dirtier and sometimes painful but always more rewarding than watching life from the sidelines.

So I jumped in and joined. Imagine my surprise when my first challenge was a naturally gluten-free dessert! It felt almost like it must be destiny.

This month’s Daring Bakers Challenge was hosted by Dawn Nyman of Doable and Delicious and is based on a recipe from Chocolate Epiphany by Francois Payard and is called Chocolate Pavlovas with Chocolate Mascarpone Mousse.

Pavlovas are naturally gluten-free and what I consider a staple in my gluten-free dessert repertoire. I am always happy to add to that repertoire.

Despite a crazy, hectic weekend with all odds against me, I did the challenge! Being a newbie to these challenges (and unsure if there are Daring Bakers police out there who will bust me) I pretty much stayed with the recipe with the exception of skipping making the mascarpone cream since I was literally out of time.  I just melted some homemade vanilla ice-cream (which is basically a frozen crème anglaise) and used that as the sauce which I pooled in little plates and topped with the pavlovas. (And don’t tell anyone, that will be our little secret, ok?)

The result? Very pretty. Very Rich. And very, very chocolaty. My resident chocolaholic g-kid Miss Milla gave this review:

“I love the sauce, it tastes like melted ice cream {me – blushing} and it goes really great with the chocolate marshmallow thing stuffed with that really rich chocolate. Delish!”

It is worth noting that Miss Milla can wolf down chocolate like nobody’s business but she could only finish half at one sitting.

Gluten Free Chocolate Pavlovas

Gluten Free Daring Bakers Chocolate Pavlovas with Chocolate Mascarpone Mousse Recipe

Recipe Source: Chocolate Epiphany by Francois Payard
(This is the recipe as given in the challenge)


Chocolate Meringue (for the chocolate Pavlova)

3 large egg whites
½ cup plus 1 tbsp (110 grams) white granulated sugar
¼ cup (30 grams) confectioner’s (icing) sugar
1/3 cup (30 grams) cocoa powder

Chocolate Mascarpone Mousse (for the top of the Pavlova base)

1 ½ cups (355 mls) heavy cream (cream with a milk fat content of between 36 and 40 percent)
grated zest of 1 average sized lemon
9 ounces (255 grams) 72% chocolate, chopped
1 2/3 cups (390 mls) mascarpone
pinch of nutmeg
2 tbsp (30 mls) Grand Marnier (or orange juice)

Mascarpone Cream (for drizzling)

1 recipe crème anglaise
½ cup (120 mls) mascarpone
2 tbsp (30 mls) Sambucca (optional)
½ cup (120 mls) heavy cream


Chocolate Meringue (for the chocolate Pavlova)

Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 200º F (95º C) degrees. Line two baking sheets with silpatGluten Free Daring Bakers Chocolate Pavlovas with Chocolate Mascarpone Mousse Recipe Image or parchment and set aside.

Put the egg whites in a bowl and whip until soft peaks form. Increase speed to high and gradually add granulated sugar about 1 tbsp at a time until stiff peaks form. (The whites should be firm but moist.)

Sift the confectioner’s sugar and cocoa powder over the egg whites and fold the dry ingredients into the white. (This looks like it will not happen. Fold gently and it will eventually come together.)

Fill a pastry bag with the meringue. Pipe the meringue into whatever shapes you desire. Alternatively, you could just free form your shapes and level them a bit with the back of a spoon.

Bake for 2-3 hours until the meringues become dry and crisp. Cool and store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Chocolate Mascarpone Mousse (for the top of the Pavlova base)

Put ½ cup (120 mls) of the heavy cream and the lemon zest in a saucepan over medium high heat. Once warm, add the chocolate and whisk until melted and smooth. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and let sit at room temperature until cool.

Place the mascarpone, the remaining cup of cream and nutmeg in a bowl. Whip on low for a minute until the mascarpone is loose. Add the Grand Marnier and whip on medium speed until it holds soft peaks. (DO NOT OVERBEAT AS THE MASCARPONE WILL BREAK.)

Mix about ¼ of the mascarpone mixture into the chocolate to lighten. Fold in the remaining mascarpone until well incorporated. Fill a pastry bag with the mousse. Again, you could just free form mousse on top of the pavlovas.

Mascarpone Cream (for drizzling)

Prepare the crème anglaise. Slowly whisk in the mascarpone and the Sambucca and let the mixture cool. Put the cream in a bowl and beat with electric mixer until very soft peaks are formed. Fold the cream into the mascarpone mixture.

Crème Anglaise (a component of the Mascarpone Cream above)

In a bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar until the mixture turns pale yellow.

Combine the milk, cream and vanilla in a saucepan over medium high heat, bringing the mixture to a boil. Take off the heat.

Pour about ½ cup of the hot liquid into the yolk mixture, whisking constantly to keep from making scrambled eggs. Pour the yolk mixture into the pan with the remaining cream mixture and put the heat back on medium. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon until the mixture thickens enough to lightly coat the back of a wooden spoon. DO NOT OVERCOOK.

Remove the mixture from the heat and strain it through a fine mesh sieve into a bowl. Cover and refrigerate until the mixture is thoroughly chilled, about 2 hours or overnight.


Pipe the gluten free mousse onto the pavlovas and drizzle with the mascarpone cream over the top. Dust with confectioner’s sugar and fresh fruit if desired.


This Gluten Free Daring Bakers Chocolate Pavlovas with Chocolate Mascarpone Mousse recipe serves 6

The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely the blog owner’s. This blog accepts free manufacturers’ samples and forms of cash advertising, sponsorship, paid insertions or other forms of compensation. Affiliate links may be included in this post.

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Categories:    Dessert

{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

Lisa (bakebikeblog) June 27, 2010 at 7:59 pm

My oh my – what a beautiful dish – and styled to perfection!!!


MeetaK June 28, 2010 at 12:42 am

Fantastic and welcome to the DBs! Good to have you on board. Great going on your first challenge!


Juls @ Juls' Kitchen June 28, 2010 at 7:02 am

WOW! excellent first challenge! I loved it!


Laura June 28, 2010 at 8:08 am

Beautiful job! Welcome to Daring Bakers.
And, btw, I used your dairy-free pastry cream for earlier challenges. Great recipe!


Tasty Eats At Home June 28, 2010 at 8:19 am

Welcome to DB! Your pavlovas are gorgeous! Love the raspberries and lemon curls. Delish.


Deeba PAB June 28, 2010 at 9:38 am

Well done on your first challenge. Those are some gorgeous looking pavs, and beautiful pictures! Am glad you took the plunge. Life can only get more exciting now! Welcome to DB's!! {I remember WEEPING over my first challenge 2 years ago … a very weepy Lemon Meringue Pie!! LOL! Then we were just 200 of us I think.}


Nachiketa June 28, 2010 at 10:09 am
ajcabuang04 June 28, 2010 at 10:25 am

I've never heard of the daring baker's challenge. I have to get on that. This looks really good though!!
Would you mind checking out my blog? :D


The Short (dis)Order Cook June 29, 2010 at 9:13 am

I do loves me the Daring Bakers. I have yet to be daring myself though.

These look so deliciously chocolatey. As SPP and I continue our Great Gluten-Free Experiment he worries about losing out on dessert. This would definitely change his mind.


Rosa's Yummy Yums June 29, 2010 at 11:30 am

Your pavlovas look splendid! Very well done!




Sanjeeta kk June 29, 2010 at 5:02 pm

Great space and beautiful recipes. Came from Meeta's blog.Nice to be here. Your clicks are very good.
Best wishes.


Laura July 1, 2010 at 6:47 pm

Wow! I'm drooling, lol. I love…… your blog! Thank you for sharing such wonderful recipes!


Aubree Cherie July 3, 2010 at 1:18 pm

Oh my.. it looks so decadent! Lovely :)

~Aubree Cherie


miles July 19, 2010 at 1:05 pm

Hey I love your blog.
Something interesting you might look into:
I have recently stumbled upon some gluten free foods that I think all people trying to live Gluten Free lives should try. The brand is Gluten Free & Fabulous and I’ve tried the shortbread cookies and spinach pizza. They were delicious and there’s more I have yet to try. Also, they are easy to get; you can buy the product straight from the . I hope this helps. Let me know what you think and keep up the great blog!


cribs March 29, 2011 at 3:01 am

That looks so delicious. Love the berries on the top! And the food presentation is something that is so inviting.


Kirill February 5, 2012 at 6:32 pm

Gorgeous plovvaa. When I saw this in the DK forum I was blown away. Black Forest is such a great idea and the photos are mouth watering!


Carol Kicinski February 5, 2012 at 10:26 pm

Thank you!


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