handful flaked almonds or roughly chopped pistachios
a little icing sugar to dust
Make the syrup-soaked figs. Put all the ingredients apart from the figs in a small pot. Bring to the boil and then simmer for about 10 minutes until the syrup thickens slightly. Skim any foam that forms on top.
Add the figs and then bring to the boil again. Reduce the heat and cook for a couple of minutes until they have softened slightly.
Transfer the figs to a container and keep chilled until needed. Strain the syrup and keep chilled. You will have more syrup than you need but it is gorgeous used in other desserts or even in cocktails in place of simple syrup.
Make the pavlova. Preheat the oven to 150C (300F). Trace a large rectangle on a piece of baking paper then place on a heavy baking tray, pencil side down.
Put the egg whites and cream of tartar in the bowl of your stand mixer. Mix together until a little frothy. Mix the sugar and zest together in a bowl.
Whisk on full speed until you have soft peaks and then continue whisking while gradually adding the sugar a spoonful at a time. Continue whisking until all the sugar is added and then sprinkle in the rosewater. Whisk away until the meringue is stiff and glossy and the sugar is completely dissolved. Sift the cornflour over the bowl and fold in.
Reduce the oven temperature to 120C (250F). Spread the meringue inside the marked rectangle on the tray and bake for 45 minutes to an hour. Turn the oven off, leave the door slightly ajar and let the meringue cool completely for a few hours or, preferably, overnight.
Place the double cream and icing sugar in the bowl of your stand mixer. Whisk until you have soft peaks, add the ricotta and rosewater and continue whisking until you have firm peaks.
Toss a large handful of flaked almonds in a frying pan and dry fry over medium heat until slightly toasted. Set aside to cool.
Spread the whipped cream over your pavlova base and then add the figs. Scatter with with the pomegranate seeds and toasted almonds. Spoon a little over the reserved syrup over the pavlova, dust with a little icing sugar and serve.
Please take care when transferring the pavlova base from the oven tray to a suitable platter as it is rather delicate and prone to breaking. I used a cake lifter to aid the process.