This is a beautiful dessert that always impresses. Baked Alaska may be prepared ahead and frozen, unwrapped, for up to 2 days. Brown just before serving.
Serves: 8Hands-on: 20 minutesTotal: 2 hours 20 minutesDifficulty: Medium
- 1 loaf (16 oz.) pound cake, cut into 1-inch slices
- 4 egg whites, at room temperature
- 1⁄8 tsp. cream of tartar
- 1⁄8 tsp. salt
- 1⁄2 cup sugar
- 1⁄2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 quart vanilla ice cream, softened
- Cover two thicknesses of corrugated 8-by-6-inch cardboard with aluminum foil. Arrange the cake slices on the covered cardboard in a 7-by-5-inch rectangle (about 3 inches high). Place in freezer and freeze 2 hours until solid.
- Preheat oven to 500°F.
- Beat egg whites until frothy in a medium bowl. Add the cream of tartar and salt, and continue beating until soft peaks form when the beaters are slowly raised. Gradually beat in the sugar 2 tablespoons at a time, beating well after each addition. Continue beating for about 3 minutes until glossy. Mix in the vanilla.
- Spoon the ice cream onto the frozen cake base. Quickly spread the ice cream evenly over the top and sides of the cake. Spoon the egg whites on top, spreading them over the top and down the sides onto the foil to seal completely. Make swirls in the egg whites on the top and sides. Place the baked Alaska on a baking sheet. Bake for 3 minutes until the meringue is light brown. Remove to a chilled platter and serve at once.