When I was small, my dad bought this book called children's parties and one of the recipes that caught my eye was this huge mountain of a cake. Well its not really a cake it was a baked Alaska, a mountain of a desert with a cake base, ice cream and meringue . It was love at first sight . I tried making it a few years back but it ended up a disaster because I left it too long inside the oven that the ice cream melted and oozed out. It looked more like an Alaskan mountain had a huge avalanche.
My hubby's birthday came and went last week. He loves sweet dishes. So I decided to give another try. After referring to various cook books and websites, I learnt that if not using a blow torch the best way to cook the meringue is to bake in a hot oven for less than 10 minutes. I used a brownie base. I was too lazy to make my own ,especially with a toddler who was suffering from a cold, I made my brownie from a box ( Betty Crocker Mix), although I found it a little too sweet. I had some left over egg white ( I always freeze my egg whites when I make recipes which requires only egg yolks).
It turned out pretty well , and delicious. You have to serve it at once , so you have to put it in oven when the guests or you family is having their meal. You can make everything ahead even one day earlier and just assemble in the last minute.
Recipe : Baked Alaska ( referred to various websites online and Mary Berry's Complete Cookbook)
Betty Crocker Dark Chocolate Supreme Brownie mix ( you can make your own if you like)
1L ( or 2 x 500ml) Baskins and Robbins Vanilla ice cream ( or any other good quality vanilla ice cream)
6 egg whites
200g caster sugar ( if not available ground regular sugar)
1. Take a metal 8 inch round baking tray, line with cling film, making sure you have a large piece hanging out, this helps when taking the frozen ice cream out later. Soften your ice cream by keeping it at room temperature ( time depends on how warm the place is, where I live, its pretty hot :) ). Spoon the ice cream into the tray, level it , and pop in the freezer till frozen solid. ( do not take it out until needed). The ice cream needs to be completely frozen.
2. Make your brownie as instructed on the box, but bake in a 8 inch round tin, same size as the ice cream tray. Bake and cool. Cut any rounded bits on top to level it, keep in a air tight container till needed.
3. Using an electric beater, in a very clean bowl ( I like to rub the cut side of a lime or lemon in side the bowl and then wipe with a kitchen paper to remove any grease), beat the egg whites till soft peaks. Start adding sugar one table spoon at a time , beating well during each addition. Beat till stiff peaks. It should stay in place even when the bowl is inverted. Cover with cling film and keep in the fridge ( you can keep egg whites the day before, but you can make this a few hours ahead).
6. Preheat the oven to Gas mark 7 ( very important to get that oven hot, do not miss this step). Place your brownie on an oven proof serving plate. Remove the ice cream and invert it on top of the brownie, remove the cling film.
7. Spoon the egg white on top making sure you cover the whole thing .The meringue acts as a insulating blanket to protect the ice cream from the heat so make sure you cover the ice cream and the brownie well.
8. Place in the oven and bake not more than 10 minutes. Keep an eye on the clock ( use a timer if you have) and dont open the oven, look through the glass !!. Once the meringue starts to get the golden colour, remove immediately .
Serve at Once!!!