Mini Butterscotch and Banana Pavlovas on RSG

I had to think long and hard about this weeks radio program on RSG. The recipe was the easy part. The pavlova was a request from our house guest, the banana and butterscotch sauce a quick fix (that turned out to be a stroke of genius) and the blog I turned to for a recipe was The Gorgeous Gourmet. The theme or shall I say the thought pattern behind this post was somewhat challenging, let me explain….or at least start at the beginning of my story!
To put it mildly, life has been somewhat challenging for my family and I in the last couple of months and we had to dig deep inside ourselves to find the strength and courage to take each and every day head on. I have come to learn(at last!) that if you embrace, rather than fight the tough times and just get on with fixing it, answers come quicker, solutions appear from nowhere and inspiration comes from the most unexpected  places. Life lessons are not learned  in school benches, life lessons are learned from falling down and getting up. Taking the highs and the lows and do it Nike style “Just do it!”
Friends of ours are staying with us at the moment, while she recovers from a cancer related operation she had last week here in Cape Town. Their courage, the will to get better, the positivity and their faith has been such an inspiration to me these last two weeks.
Fighting cancer the first time, must be so scary, fighting it the second time……takes great courage and that is what I have learned…So bottom line for me is this piece of advise:

Just put your girl panties on and deal with it!
My friend had a big stomach  operation and was not allowed to eat for days. Then slowly she started with little meals so when she asked for a Pavlova tonight, I was the happiest host in the world. Elize, this one is for you. You are such a inspiration and right next to you, is that amazing husband of yours. I salute you both!
Mini Butterscotch and Banana Pavlovas
Makes 6 mini pavlovas or 1 big round pavlova
Ingredients
225 gram caster sugar
4 egg whites
1 ml corn starch
2.5 ml butterscotch extract or essence
Preheat oven to 120 C( 250 F). Place a pot with water on the stove and bring to the boil. In a big mixing bowl that fit over the pot, pour the caster sugar and the egg whites. When the water comes to the boil, place the mixing bowl with eggs and sugar over the boiling water and beat the egg whites and sugar until it is warm and most of the sugar has melted. Transfer mixture to your blender and beat until your have a glossy white meringue. Sprinkle the cornstarch over the mixture and fold it in with a metal spoon. Place a sheet or baking paper(not wax)  on a baking sheet and divide the meringue mixture into 6 mini pavlovas. Bake for 1½ hours, switch the oven off and allow pavlovas to cool in the oven.
Banana and Butterscotch Sauce
Ingredients
1 cup sugar
100gr butter
125ml cream
3 bananas – peeled and sliced
Place the sugar and butter in a pot and allow to melt over low heat. Once the mixture starts bubbling, keep your eye on it as it burns quickly. Allow to caramelize and once you have a deep golden color, add the cream. The sugar will solidify when the cream is added, but just keep stirring on low heat. Once your sauce is done, smooth and has thickened slightly, add sliced banana before serving this butterscotch sauce on the pavlovas. 

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