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Alchemy Bakery chef's pavlova combines strawberries with dash of pepper

Alchemy Bakery chef's pavlova combines strawberries with dash of pepper

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QI have a special request for a recipe from Chef Tai Davis of Alchemy Bakery, Strawberry Pepper Pavlova. Pavlovas are one of my favorite desserts and the peppery addition sounds interesting. — Leslie Pin, Tower Grove South

A • When we asked Chef Tai Davis if he would share his recipe for Strawberry Pepper Pavlova, he sent the recipe right over. It is one of 10 recipes by Davis, of Alchemy Bakery, which he operates out of his home, geared to home cooks in his book, “#4 Tai Davis,” which is scheduled for release in June or July.

Luckily, he and Small Circle Cookbooks founders and publishers R.J. Hartbeck and Mary von der Heydt shared just in time for strawberry season and for Mother’s Day.

“Pavlova is the national dessert of Australia, and I can easily see why,” Davis says. “The refreshing mix of fruits, meringue and whipped cream make this dessert satisfying, not too sweet, and so darn good.” This recipe combines the light pavlova with balsamic and black pepper macerated strawberries. The black pepper is optional, but trust us on this; it adds the mildest bit of fruity spice and enhances the natural sweetness of the berries.

R.J. Hartbeck concurs. “I’ve tested, tasted, and photographed this dish, and it is absolutely delicious. It’s vibrant and colorful,” he says. “When you bite into this pavlova it’s an explosion of flavors. Tai is an incredible culinary professional, and he’s also a beautiful artist.”

Davis, who is well-known for his skills as a chef, baker and fine artist, styled the shot of the pavlova, adding a slice of star fruit to the plate, as well as a few meringue “kisses.” Pavlovas lend themselves to different combinations of fruits and creams, as Davis points out on his Instagram posting about Small Circle and this pavlova. “How about a peach and cream inspired one with grilled peaches, clotted cream, tulsi and magnolia infused honey?” he asks. He’s also thinking about a pavlova with chocolate mousse and bergamot for summer.

Find more Tai Davis favorite recipes when the Small Circle “#4” cookbook comes out this summer. In the meantime, check out book “#1” featuring recipes from Ben Grupe, owner and chef at Tempus, book “#2” from Tara and Michael Gallina with recipes from the owners and chef of Vicia and book “#3” by Evy Swoboda of Brasserie.

Tai Davis; Alchemy Bakery

Small Circle Cookbooks

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