Hello all! I’ve been very lazy with my blog lately, but as I’m now on holidays from school (phew!) I’ll be making regular posts. Today’s offering is: Baked Alaska. In my eyes it’s a perfect dessert and will please any fussy eater with its three components: the creamy ice cream centre, the crunchy biscuit base and the marshmallow like crunchy coating. I make homemade ice cream for this but you can use shop bought,(1 litre tub will do just fine) leaving It to melt a little then pouring into the pudding basin mould.
Here’s what you need….
500ml full-fat milk
300ml single/double cream
1 tbsp vanilla bean paste
5 large egg yolks (keep 3 whites for meringue)
140g caster sugar
Put the milk and cream in a saucepan. Heat over a low heat, stirring occasionally, until it almost boils – you’ll see a few bubbles at the edge.
Mix the egg yolks and sugar together in a bowl. Gradually pour the milk over the egg mixture, whisking continuously until combined. Pour everything back into the cleaned pan, return to a low heat and cook for 8-10 mins, stirring all the time with a wooden spoon, until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon. Make sure it doesn’t boil or you will end up with scrambled eggs.
Pour the custard through a fine sieve into a bowl, then sit it in a bigger bowl, one-third full of ice and water, to cool it down – keep stirring every now and then to stop a skin forming. Add the vanilla bean paste. Chill to make sure it is completely cold, putting cling film directly on the surface of the custard to prevent a skin from forming.
Pour the custard into an ice-cream machine. Churn following manufacturers’ instructions until frozen, then spoon into a pudding basin (1.5/2 litre) smooth out so the surface is even, cover and freeze until solid.
25g caster sugar
1 egg yolk
Half a tsp vanilla extract
Pinch baking powder
Cream the butter until soft, add the sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolk and vanilla extract and beat until combined. Sift the flour and baking powder and mix until it forms a dough. Put it in clingfilm and put in the fridge for about 30 minutes. Roll the dough out in a circle until it is 1cm thick and is wider than your pudding basin by an inch. Trim around the edges. Bake in a preheated oven at 180C for 15 minutes until golden but not brown.
Leave to cool
170g caster sugar
3 egg whites
1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste
In an electric mixer, add the sugar and egg white and beat for 10-15 mins until stiff. Add vanilla paste and mix through.
Sit the pudding basin of now solid ice cream in boiling water for 5-10 seconds until loose around the edges. Place the ice cream, upturned, on the biscuit base. Smother the meringue all around the ice cream making sure it is completely sealed between the ice cream and the base. Use a palette knife to do this and make swirls and peaks for the meringue to crisp up. Place in a preheated 220C oven for 4-5 mins until the meringue is set and golden at the peaks.
Add 1tbsp of sifted cocoa powder to the biscuit base when adding the flour and using a chocolate ice cream instead of vanilla for a chocolate baked Alaska. It is also delicious when you use two types of ice cream, chocolate in one half and cookie dough ice cream in the other half is a mouth warring combination!! You can also serve it with chocolate sauce or raspberry coulis for some extra pizazz…