Recipe 55: Baked Alaska

Happy Monday bloggers and readers, welcome to the start of a new week. I’ve begun mine with my second week back at uni and the reading has well and truly started piling up; however, to cheer myself up I thought I’d share the 55th recipe from Mary’s ‘Baking Bible’ – Baked Alaska. 

Photo 07-09-2013 21 12 52

This particular pud has fond memories of childhood for me, it used to fascinate me that you could put ice cream into the oven…and it wasn’t melty! However, that magic surrounding that little myth has been well and truly ruined since I now know how to make it. I made this for my mum for her birthday meal (her request) and it received the big thumbs up! Essentially, its a unrolled swiss roll covered in ice cream and meringue and it’s not tricky at all. I’d love to make mini ones for a dinner party – using tartlet tins, making it look a lot fancier than it is. Go for it bakers!

Ingredients:

For the sponge base:

  • 2 large eggs
  • 75 g caster sugar
  • 50 g self raising flour

For the filling:

  • Optional: 1 tbsp sherry (I didn’t use it)
  • 225 g strawberries
  • 1 L strawberry ice cream

For the meringue topping:

  • 4 large egg whites
  • 225 g caster sugar
  • 50 g flaked almonds (optional)
  • Icing sugar (for dusting, optional)

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 190C/fan 170C/gas mark 5. Lightly grease a 9″ sandwich tin (or 9″ square tin as I used to make it look a bit different) and line the base with parchment.
  2. For the sponge, add the eggs and sugar into a large bowl and beat at full speed until the mix is pale and thick to leave a trail when the whisk is lifted; it’ll take a bit of time for this stage – much like making a swiss roll. Sift the flour over the surface of the mix and gently fold in with a spatula; turn into the prepared tin and tilt it to allow the mix to spread evenly to the sides. Photo 07-09-2013 13 01 59
  3. Bake for 20-25 mins until springy to the touch and shrinking away from the edges; turn out and leave to cool on a wire rack.
  4. Photo 07-09-2013 13 49 22Place the cold sponge onto an ovenproof serving dish (I used a large plate), sprinkle with sherry if using then scatter with the strawberries. Using an ice cream scoop, arrange it in little domes around the sponge, leaving a small gap around the edges. Place the dish into the freezer while you make the meringue. Photo 07-09-2013 13 55 46
  5. Preheat the oven to 230C/fan 210C/gas mark 8. To make the meringue topping, whisk the egg whites at full speed until they become stiff but not dry. Add the sugar, a tbsp at a time, whisking at high speed between each addition. Whisk until all the sugar has been added and your meringue is thick and glossy.Photo 07-09-2013 16 49 58
  6. Remove the baked alaska cake base from the freezer and pile the meringue over the top and sides. It’s important to make sure that all the ice cream and sponge have been covered to stop the ice cream running out! Sprinkle over the flaked almonds (if using) then bake in the oven for 4 minutes or until well browned. Serve immediately. Photo 07-09-2013 21 09 39
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