Guilt-less Desserts & Treats for your Family

Pavlington Cake


You know when are reading a magazine and you see something you really want. You start to drool, you start to imagine what it would look like in the flesh, you can’t stop thinking about it (I’m referring here to food magazines but the same reaction could apply to shoes or crochet patterns… yep I’m weird!).
You have to have it… only it contains all the ingredients that would make you feel less than well. Back to the carrot sticks! HELL NO I say!

This month’s Taste Magazine had an Australian Day dessert Challenge set by non other than the amazing Adriano Zumbo, patisserie extraordinaire! It’s called the PAVLINGTON- a cross between a lamington and a pavlova. I like to think of it as a dessert platypus; all the good bits combined to make a super dessert (without the webbed feet!).

So Australian! So Tasty; and now it’s all mine! I have made some changes to the original Taste Magazine recipe. Instead of 4 small square cakes I have made 1 large cake and, of course, made it Gluten, Dairy and Processed Sugar free.

The Pavlington Cake is a bit time consuming, but totally worth it! All the elements are simple to make, and the construction is straightforward but it pays to start early. The sponge, curd, gel and cream can be made the day before. If possible, make the meringue layer the day of construction as it may soften and weep. This Pavlington Cake is like a trifle in cake form. It is so soft and gooey and the lemon curd will ooze out of the cut pieces. Delicious!

So, the most awesome thing happened today (other than having a piece of Pavlington for breakfast!). I tweeted a photo of a slice of Pavlington today and it was favourited by

Adriano Zumbo! The master inventor of the Pavlington himself! Best, and most tasty, AUSTRALIA DAY EVER!!!


I have included some step by step photos to show how to out this masterpiece together.

The sponges ready to be cut up
The sponges ready to be cut up
Sponge Walls
Sponge Walls
Raspberry Gel
Raspberry Gel
Whipped Cream
Whipped Cream
Meringue Layer
Meringue Layer
Lemon Curd and Fruit
Lemon Curd and Fruit
Giant Lamington Cake
Giant Lamington Cake
Pavlington Cake- ode to Zumbo!
Serves 16
PAVLINGTON CAKE There are several parts to this cake. Make each part (except for the chocolate coating) then begin construction. The sponge, lemon curd, whipped coconut cream and raspberry gel can be made up to 2 days ahead. You will require a 20cm/8inch spring form cake tin for cake construction
Sponge Cake
  1. 9 eggs, separated
  2. 3/4 cup Maple Syrup
  3. 3/4 cup Coconut Flour
  4. 3 teaspoons Baking Powder
  5. 1 1/2 Tablespoons Vanilla Extract
Lemon Curd
  1. 3 eggs
  2. 2 egg yolks
  3. 1/2 cup Maple Syrup
  4. Zest of 1 to 2 lemons (start with 1, increase depending on taste)
  5. 2/3 cup Lemon Juice, strained
  6. 1/2 cup coconut oil (softened slightly)
Whipped Coconut Cream
  1. 1 can Canned Coconut Cream, lid removed and placed in the fridge over night
  2. 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
  3. 2 teaspoons Maple Syrup
Raspberry Gel
  1. 500 grams frozen raspberries, thawed (keep the juices)
  2. 2 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
  3. 1 teaspoon Gelatine
  4. 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  1. 2 egg whites
  2. 1/2 cup Maple Syrup
  3. 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  4. 1/2 teaspoon Vinegar
  5. 2 teaspoon Arrowroot
  1. 8-9 strawberries, hulled and cut into pieces
  2. Small handful of blueberries
Chocolate Coating
  1. 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon Maple Syrup
  2. 3/4 cup Cocoa
  3. 1/2 cup Water
  4. 1/2 cup Coconut Cream
  5. 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
  6. 2 1/2 teaspoons Gelatine
  7. 2 Tablespoons Water
  8. 1 cup Desiccated Coconut
Sponge Cake
  1. Preheat the oven to 175C/350F
  2. Grease and line 2 20cm circular cake tins (for the base and top) and 2 20 cm square cake tins (to form the walls). Alternatively, a large baking tray could be used instead of the 2square tins. The square cakes will be cut into strips to form the walls of the Pavlington Cake.
  3. Add the egg whites to the bowl of a kitchen stand mixer with a whisk attachment (alternatively use hand beaters).
  4. Whisk on the egg whites on medium until soft peaks form.
  5. Slowly add the maple syrup to the egg whites, 1 tablespoon at a time, whilst still whisking on medium.
  6. Add the Vanilla Extract then the egg yolks, whilst whisking on medium.
  7. In a separate bowl soft the coconut flour and baking powder together.
  8. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, folding them in gently.
  9. Do not over fold or whisk as too much air will be lost and the sponge will be tough and flat.
  10. Evenly pour the sponge mixture between the 4 lined and greased cake tins.
  11. Bake for 8-10 min, or until golden and cooked through.
  12. Remove the trays from the oven.
  13. Allow the sponges to cool before removing from the tins.
Lemon Curd
  1. Whisk the eggs, egg yolks, maple syrup, lemon zest and juice in a heat proof bowl until the mixture is well combined.
  2. Place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (double boiler method).
  3. Do not let the bottom of the bowl touch the water.
  4. Add the coconut oil 1 spoonful at a time. Whisk after each addition.
  5. Only add the next spoonful once the previous one has combined.
  6. Stir regularly.
  7. This should take approximately 15 minutes. When done the mixture will be thickened and able to coat the back of the spoon.
  8. Cool and place in a glass container. Store in the fridge.
Whipped Coconut Cream
  1. Spoon the thickened cream out of the can, discarding the watery remains.
  2. Place the coconut cream, maple syrup and vanilla extract in a mixing bowl and whisk on high until thickened. The key is to forget about the cream and leave it to whip for at least 5 minute. Place the whipped cream back in the fridge to thicken before using.
Raspberry Gel
  1. Place the thawed raspberries in a blender and purée until smooth.
  2. Pass the purée through a sieve, using the back of a spoon to press out as much juice as possible into a bowl. (I passed the purée through the sieve twice)
  3. At this point measure the raspberry juice that you have collected.
  4. If 1 cup, use 1 teaspoon of gelatine; if 1 1/2 cups, use 1 1/2 teaspoons of gelatine.
  5. Place the juice, maple syrup and gelatine in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to a rolling boil.
  6. Add the lemon juice and mix well.
  7. Pour into a heat proof bowl, cover and keep in the fridge.
  1. Preheat the oven to 130C/260F
  2. Draw 2 18cm (7 1/4 inch) circles on baking paper.
  3. Place the 2 baking paper circles on 2 trays, pencil side down.
  4. Lightly grease.
  5. Place the egg whites in a mixing bowl and whisk on medium until soft peaks form.
  6. Slowly add the maple syrup, 1 tablespoon at a time, until stiff peaks form.
  7. Add the vanilla extract and whisk until combined.
  8. Sift the Arrowroot over the meringue mixture.
  9. Add the vinegar and gently fold in.
  10. Evenly divide the meringue mixture between the 2 circles.
  11. Use an offset spatula or flat knife to spread the mixture evenly over the traced circle until about 1.5cm thick.
  12. Bake for 15-17 minutes, or until a slight golden crust forms on top. The meringue will still be soft and gooey in side.
  13. Allow to cool.
  1. Line a 20cm/8inch Springform cake tin with baking paper. Cut the baking paper and line the edges of the tin also.
  2. Place one of the circle sponges on the bottom of the tin.
  3. Cut the square sponges into long strips and line the sides of the tin. My cake was 6.5cm high, so the strips needed to be approximately that high.
  4. Ensure that there are no gaps (it doesn't matter if the edges resemble more of a patchwork quilt than a sturdy wall as they will be covered by chocolate).
  5. Stir and loosen the raspberry gel.
  6. Spread 1/2 the gel over the bottom sponge.
  7. Place 1/2 the Whipped Coconut Cream in a piping bag and thinly pipe over the raspberry gel (this prevents the gel and cream from mixing). Use a palette knife to gently spread the cream to cover the Raspberry gel.
  8. Place the meringue on top of the cream, trimming it to fit if required.
  9. Spread 1/2 the curd over the meringue.
  10. Sprinkle strawberries and blueberries over the curd.
  11. Top with the remaining curd.
  12. Place the meringue layer on top of the curd.
  13. Spread the remaining raspberry gel on top of the meringue.
  14. Pipe the remaining whipped coconut cream on top of the raspberry gel, and gently spread to cover the gel.
  15. Place the circle sponge on top, trimming the edges of the sponge walls if required.
  16. Place the tin in the fridge for at least 2 hours (I left mine overnight and it was fine) and then in the freezer for 1 hour before coating in the Chocolate sauce.
Chocolate Coating
  1. Place all ingredients (except for the gelatine, 2 Tablespoons of water and Coconut) in a saucepan and bring to a rolling boil over medium heat, stirring continuously.
  2. Boil for 2 minutes, stirring continuously. The mixture will be shiny and thickened.
  3. Take off the heat and allow to sit for 3 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, sprinkle the gelatine over 2 tablespoons of water and allow to sit for 5 minutes.
  5. Add the gelatine mixture to the chocolate and whisk until dissolved.
  6. Allow to sit for 3 minutes.
  7. Remove the Pavlington Cake from the freezer and gently remove from the springform tin.
  8. Place the Pavlington on a wire rack over a baking tray (this catches the chocolate drips- the left overs taste awesome!).
  9. Pour the Chocolate coating evenly over the Pavlington.
  10. Use a metal spatula (or flat knife) to spread the coating over the side edges of the coat. Do this 2-3 times to get an even covering.
  11. If necessary, reuse the chocolate that has dripped into the tray.
  12. Once the sponge is completely covered sift the coconut over the top and sides (you may need to get messy and throw the coconut over the sides).
  13. Return to the fridge and allow to set for at least 1 hour before serving.
  14. Very carefully, transfer to a serving plate before serving.
  15. Keep in the fridge.
Adapted from and Adriano Zumbo
Adapted from and Adriano Zumbo
Mummy Made.It - Gluten Free, Paleo Desserts




2 Comments to Pavlington Cake

  1. wow! you really outdid yourself with this cake. i’ve never heard of it but it seems like it was totally worth all the time! looks delicious. i’m a huge lemon curd fan but haven’t perfected it yet. stays too liquidy for me.

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