Twist on a classic! Andy Bowdy's Angostura bitters-infused pavlova recipe (2024)

As long as the pavlova has been in our cooking repertoire, the question about who invented the dessert has remained a hotly-contested debate. In honour of this bitter rivalry, pastry chef Andy Bowdy is inviting Kiwis and Aussies to get the bitters out of the liquor cabinet and into the spice rack this festive season, with this Angostura aromatic bitters-infused pavlova recipe.

Instantly recognisable with its yellow cap and oversized label, House of Angostura has perfected its secret recipe for over 200 years. With an aromatic taste of fruits, spices and herbs, Angostura aromatic bitters has long been a favourite in the bartender’s toolkit, most notably used in the classic lemon, lime and bitters.

But, as Bowdy reveals, it’s also a secret weapon in the kitchen, adding an aromatic splash of spice to desserts and a dash of seasoning in cooking.

Let’s put the rivalry to the test and see who can make the best pav this Christmas.

Andy Bowdy’s Angostura bitters-infused pavlova recipe

Twist on a classic! Andy Bowdy's Angostura bitters-infused pavlova recipe (1)


  • 315g Egg whites
  • 525g Caster Sugar
  • 3 tsp Cornflour
  • 3 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 dashes Angostura aromatic bitters

Preheat oven to 105 degrees celsius.

Grease and line a baking tray.

Using a mixer with whisk attachment, whisk egg whites and sugar to a stiff meringue.

Meanwhile combine cornflour and vinegar in large mixing bowl and add dashes of Angostura aromatic bitters.

Turn out meringue mix onto cornflour mixture and gently fold together. Pour mix onto a metal oven tray lined with baking paper and shape as desired.

Bake in the oven at 105 degrees celsius for approximately 3 hours. Cool in oven with door ajar.


  • 125g guava puree
  • 75g strawberry puree
  • 250g pineapple juice
  • 250g passionfruit juice
  • 400g caster sugar
  • 50g dried hibiscus
  • 3 dashes Angostura aromatic bitters

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan on a low heat and gently warm until sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat.

Allow to steep at least 4 hours before straining.

Creme Diplomat

  • 625g fassionola
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 70g cornflour
  • 30g custard powder
  • 30g butter
  • 3 sheets titanium gelatine sheets
  • 400g whipped cream

Place gelatine sheets in cold water to bloom.

Meanwhile, place yolks, sugar, cornflour, custard powder and 100g fassionola in bowl and whisk into a smooth paste.

Place remaining fassionola in a saucepan on a low heat and warm gently on a stove. Whisk warmed fassionola into egg mix to temper eggs.

Return egg mix to the stove and cook whisking constantly allowing mix to boil and cook out flour. Add butter and gelatine and whisk to combine.

Pour mix into a dish and refrigerate till set.

Once mix is set, place in a food processor and blend until smooth then fold through whipped cream.

Keep mix refrigerated till assembling pavlova.

Twist on a classic! Andy Bowdy's Angostura bitters-infused pavlova recipe (2)

Caramalised Pineapple and Angostura Aromatic Bitters Jam

  • 1 pineapple, cut into 1.5cm cubes
  • 600g caster sugar
  • 2 dashes Angostura aromatic bitters
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla paste
  • 300ml pineapple juice
  • 2 Tbsp cornflour

In a small saucepan place sugar and cook over a low heat to a medium to dark caramel. Add pineapple, Angostura aromatic bitters and vanilla and stir through.

Add pineapple juice and allow pineapple to cook gently until slightly softened.

Strain pineapple from liquid.

Take 100ml of the caramel mix and make a smooth paste with the cornflour. Add paste to the rest of the caramel mix and return to stove and cook until thickened.

Fold pineapple through thickened caramel and refrigerate until assembly.

Angostura Bitters Sugar Syrup

  • 6 good dashes Angostura aromatic bitters
  • 300g sugar
  • 300g water

Sour Cream Chantilly

  • 1L pure cream
  • 500g sour cream
  • 200g caster sugar
  • Seeds from 1 vanilla pod or 1⁄2 tsp vanilla bean paste

Whisk all ingredients in a stand mixer with a whisk attachment until cream is thickened and holds.

How to assemble Andy Bowdy’s Angostura bitters-infused pavlova

Twist on a classic! Andy Bowdy's Angostura bitters-infused pavlova recipe (3)

With a small serrated knife, cut a disc from the top of the pavlova to expose cavity.

Cut a fresh pineapple in two, dice ½ into small chunks, place in bowl and toss through Angostura aromatic bitters sugar syrup.

Fill pavlova cavity with fassionola creme diplomat and fresh pineapple that’s been tossed through sugar syrup.

In a stand mixer whip sour cream Chantilly.

Cover top of the pavlova with chantily cream.

Place pineapple jam chunks across the top of the cream.

Take remaining ½ fresh pineapple and shave thinly on mandolin and toss through Angostura aromatic bitters sugar syrup.

Fold and curl shaved pineapple throughout pineapple chunks.

Pluck leaves from top of pineapple and cut into pointy strips, tuck into gaps on top of pavlova.

To finish, scrape the pulp from 5 passionfruit, mix through 4 tbs of the pineapple caramel and drizzle across the top of the pavlova

Serve and enjoy!

For more inspiring ideas, and to see if we can put an end to this bitter rivalry, follow Angostura on Instagram

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Twist on a classic! Andy Bowdy's Angostura bitters-infused pavlova recipe (2024)
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