The August 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Elissa of 17 and Baking. For the first time, The Daring Bakers partnered with Sugar High Fridays for a co-event and Elissa was the gracious hostess of both. Using the theme of beurre noisette, or browned butter, Elissa chose to challenge Daring Bakers to make a pound cake to be used in either a Baked Alaska or in Ice Cream Petit Fours. The sources for Elissa’s challenge were Gourmet magazine and David Lebovitz’s “The Perfect Scoop”.
The only times I remember having Baked Alaska before was abroad a cruise ship on formal nights. I love the combination of soft melty ice cream and cake all covered in sweet marshmallowy meringue, so I was excited to finally make it at home. Unfortunately, my results did not live up to my expectations. Especially disappointing because I was serving it to guests.
I made the cake on a day that was crammed full with too many errands, a baby shower, a wedding reception and out-of-town guests. I doubled the cake recipe and baked it in a sheet cake pan so that I would have enough for eight servings. Unfortunately, I had to leave before the cake was finished baking and left my husband in charge of taking it out of the oven and in the end it was too dry.
The ice cream was a fabulous cherry chocolate ice cream recipe from Our Best Bies made with fresh, delicious cherries. It tasted wonderful right out of the ice cream freezer, but I think the assembly process of the Baked Alaska made it turn a bit icy.
The meringue wasn’t tasty either. It whipped up beautifully and looked so pretty swirled on my individual Baked Alaskas. We even improvised and used my husband’s soldering torch, which worked pretty well. But unfortunately the meringue was so salty that it was inedible.
Everyone was good sports about eating this dessert that I worked so hard on and looked delicious, but even after scrapping off the meringue, it really wasn’t worth the calories.
Other Daring Bakers loved this recipe, it just didn’t work for me. I need to do a redo and try some new flavors. Baked Alaska can be as easy or as complicated as you want to make it. You could easily bake up some brownies, cut them into individual servings, buy some fab ice cream, mold it, whip up some merinuge and toasted it for a very impressive and easy dessert. I may just do that soon.
Visit the Daring Kitchen Recipe Achieve for the recipes, instructions, step by step photographs and a fabulous slide show of all the amazing Daring Baker’s Baked Alaskas. Thanks Elissa for the push I needed to make Baked Alaska at home.
Oh No! Sorry it didn’t work out – but your baked alaskas look magnificent, and cherry chocolate icecream sounds devine. I wasn’t much of a fan of the cake I have to say – it was pretty dry regardless.
It’s so frustrating when a recipe does not meet your expectations. Your photos tell a completely different story.
I LOVE your new site and your baked Alaska look amazing!!! Welcome to WordPress!
I have been meaning to stop by your site for ages, having seen your name come up lots of times in comment sections of some of my favourite blogs. I’m glad I finally found time! Sorry you didn’t like the baked alaska. I found the petit fours a little disappointing – I hope next month’s challenge has both you and I happier with our work.
Barbara…I embaressingly admit that although I knew what baked Alaskas were…I’ve never had quite the experience of eating it yet.
By the looks of your photos…no one would ever imagine that they were less than a great success. Sorry for all your hard work. You’re still aces in my book ;o)
Ciao for now,
Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella
You did a beautiful job mum! I'm so glad I finally made a baked alaska too, it was nervewracking but fun! 😀
I love the idea of Baked Alaska even though I've never had the joy of eating one or been daring enough to attempt the recipe. Yours looks fabulous though! I can't believe that it isn't worth loosening my jeans for 🙂
I love the flavour of your icecream! I think I'll be using cherries a lot this summer! Sorry the baked Alaska didn't work out. I actually made the Italian meringue and didn't put any salt in it at all but I have to say I don't particularly like the thought of gooey meringue so that put me off a bit.
Ooooh. I just broke out my blow torch for lemon meringue cupcakes and this seems like the next perfect project for it! Love Baked Alaskas!
Oh, these look wonderful! Love the idea of individual Baked Alaskas.
I don't like meringue at all. I would have used whipped cream instead haha. Your baked alaskas look great. I'm sorry that they didn't turn out well. At least you can say you made them before!! You should try making a plainer version (vanilla or chocolate ice cream) with a different cake base and whipped cream. YUM!
It certainly LOOKS pretty! My oven died in the middle of baking the cake:(
they sure look wonderful! it's a bummer though that all your work didn't get the results you were hoping for. i've heard about baked alaskas, but didn't know until now what they were!
These are gorgeous Barbara! After all the time you spent I'm sorry they didn't turn out like you hoped. I have never had a baked Alaska before but my Mom is always asking me to make one.
Tch tch… next time the hub had better watch out! I think you did a marvellous job Barbara, and I love the ice cream flavour, and how neat your little ones look. I need a blow torch!! I do ..
What a beautifully done challenge GF!!
These looks soooo cute .I love the size ……… well done
I have horrid memories of having to redo & redo this dessert during my chef apprenticeship until I got it right, I think of this beautiful little morsel is the devil incarnate…., well., slight exaggeration, but even though I did master the dish, it always – for some reason – has a cantankerous steak about it (& I too wouldn't have known it had its flaws unless you'd told us Barbara, yours look fabulous).
Barbara, you did a great job making this look beautiful. Too bad it didn't taste as you hoped. I haven't looked at the Daring Bakers recipe, but I know when I make a soft meringue like this, I use 2 egg whites, 6 tbsp granulated sugar & just a pinch of salt.
Wowww looks grt…just awesome…
Even though they didn't turn out as hoped, they still look beautiful!