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  The History of BakedAlaska

 

1867 - Charles Ranhofer, chef at the famous Delmonico's restaurant in New York, created a new cake to celebrate the United States purchase of Alaska from the Russians. Ranhofer is said to have invented it to commemorate Seward's purchase of Alaska in 1867. It was, at first, called Alaska-Florida Cake, but was soon changed to Baked Alaska. It was a spectacular cake, topped with solidly frozen ice cream, the whole enveloped in meringue, then browned and served still warm from the oven. It is possible that what Ranhofer deserves is the credit for popularizing an already known dessert.

The key to success for this recipe is to keep the ice cream as cold as possible and turn up the oven as high as it will go.

Recipe......... Baked Alaska
Two 1-pound frozen pound cakes

Half gallon block of your favorite flavor ice cream

Apricot jam, as needed

8 egg whites

3/4 cup "instant" superfine sugar



Cut each pound cake into 3 horizontal slices; each slice should be about 9 1/2 inches long, 2 1/2 inches wide, and slightly thicker than 1/2 inch.


Set a slice of cake on a baking dish. Cut a piece of the block of ice cream to fit on the cake base, keeping 3/4 inch clear all round. Return the cake and ice cream to freezer for about an hour, or until the ice cream is hard again.


Remove the cake and ice cream from the freezer and fully enclose the ice cream with more slices of pound cake "glued" to the ice cream with jam. Return the cake and ice cream to the freezer for at least 2 hours.


Preheat the oven to its highest setting. Beat the egg whites until semi-stiff. Gradually add the sugar to the egg whites, a couple of tablespoonful at a time, and continue to beat until the meringue is stiff and glossy.


Remove the ice cream and cake from the freezer. With a spatula, spread about half of the meringue over the pound cake, making sure to completely cover the sides and top. Transfer the remaining meringue to a pastry bag fitted with a star tip and pipe it over the cake, making it as decorative as you wish. Bake for 3 minutes to brown the meringue, and serve the Baked Alaska immediately so the ice cream doesn't melt


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Nutrition Facts

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Makes 8 servings
Facts per Serving

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Calories: 862 Fat: 43g Carbohydrates: 108g
Cholesterol: 254mg Sodium: 490mg Protein: 15g
Fiber: 1g % Cal. from Fat: 45% % Cal. from Carbs: 50%

Links

http://www.geocities.com/NapaValley/4079/History/IceCream/BakedAlaska.htm

Great Article on Ice Cream History
http://www.fspronet.com/sheilah/icecream.html

Ice Cream Facts
http://www.makeicecream.com/hisoficecrea.html

 

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Last updated February 8, 2005