Line a small baking tin with baking paper (I used 20 x 20 but the exact size doesn’t matter)
In a medium heavy based pan, heat the sugar and golden syrup over low heat until the sugar dissolves. Meanwhile, measure the baking soda into a small container, ready to use quickly, and have the baking tin nearby.
Increase the heat and bring the sugar to the boil. Boil for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally so it doesn’t burn. you’ll see it turn a slightly darker caramel colour.
Add the baking soda and quickly stir to fully combine - the hokey pokey will froth up and lighten.
Quickly pour into prepared tin. Don’t worry about spreading it out evenly.
Leave to set until cold and then break into pieces. If it has been a very humid day, you might find that it gets a bit sticky - just keep it in the freezer until you need it and it will much easier to snap and crumble
You will probably have extra left over after using it for the pavlova - dip leftovers in melted chocolate to make them even better!
Slab Pavlova Base
Line a baking tray with baking paper. Using a 20x 30cm tin or a ruler, trace out a roughly 20 x 30cm rectangle on your baking paper with a pencil - this gives you a guide for shaping the pavlova.
Preheat the oven to 180°C (not fan bake).
Wipe out your stand mixing bowl with a bit of lemon juice or vinegar to remove any bits of grease from last time you used it - you want your bowl and beater attachment to be super clean and dry.
Add the egg whites and salt to the bowl and beat using the whisk attachment on high speed until frothy.
Still on high speed, start adding the caster sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, until it is all absorbed and the egg whites are stiff and glossy. This should take about 10 minutes, and when you rub a bit of meringue between your fingers you shouldn’t be able to feel any sugar granules.
Whisk in the vinegar. Sift the corn flour over the meringue and gently fold through with a spatula.
Use a big spoon to drop dollops of meringue onto your traced rectangle. Use an offset spatular similar to spread it gently into a rectangle, creating a few swirls and peaks as you go.
Place it in the oven. Immediately turn the heat down to 130°C and bake for 1 1/2 hours. Turn off the oven and leave it in the oven without opening the door until completely cool, ideally overnight.
Honey Roast Peaches
Preheat the oven to 180°C
Halve and stone the peaches and place cut side up in a single layer in a rectangular roasting tray or baking tin with sides. In a small bowl, combine the honey, brown sugar, water and vanilla. Pour over the peaches.
Roast for 30-40 minutes, basting the peaches with the honey syrup occasionally, until the peaches are tender and starting to caramelise around the edges.
Set aside in a bowl to cool, including the honey syrup. Use at room temperature - if they are still hot they will start making the mascarpone cream runny.
Whip the cream to soft peaks.
In a separate bowl, mix together the mascarpone, creme fraiche, icing sugar and vanilla. Fold in the softly whipped cream.
Spoon the mascarpone cream over the cooled pavlova base.
Top with the cooled caramelised peaches and shards of hokey pokey.