By now you should have enjoyed two delicious courses, drank some fine wine and, most importantly, now just be staring into each other’s eyes. If you can draw yourself away long enough, we have one more little treat for you.
Our final retro treat for you is a real blast from the past. This is a really fun dish, and sharing a large one makes it even more exciting. Just imagine sinking your spoon through the crisp outer layer into marshmallowy meringue, then boozy smooth ice cream, all the way down to the chocolate brownie base. With all that on the spoon it’s going to take all your will-power to feed this to your loved one, and not shove it your own gob.
A traditional baked Alaska usually has a sponge base but I thought chocolate brownie sounds a bit more decedent and if this is not the day to spoil someone then when is?
The impressive thing about the baked Alaska is that it goes into the oven to cook the outside, and the ice cream within stays frozen. To protect the ice cream it is surrounded by a layer of Italian meringue. This differs from a normal meringue (French meringue) in that instead of sugar being mixed in, very hot sugar syrup is mixed with the egg whites, which cooks them. This process means you get a very stable meringue which will hold its shape for days in the fringe compared to a normal one which will collapse after a few hours.
- One quantity of Chocolate Brownie
- One tub of good quality vanilla ice cream
- 25ml Amaretto
- 60g/2½oz sugar
- 5 tsp water
- 1 free-range egg white
- Remove the ice cream from the freezer and allow to soften slightly at room temperature, then bash in the booze.
- Scoop the ice cream into a cappuccino cup or similar sized mould, pressing down tightly. Put it back in the freezer to harden.
- Using a mixer, whisk your egg whites until they form stiff peaks.
- Place the sugar and water into a pan and slowly bring to the boil until the syrup reaches 121C, using the probe I told you to buy in the last post.
- Whilst whisking, drizzle the sugar syrup into the egg whites in a steady stream, (ensuring it doesn’t hit the beater in your mixer, as this will cool the syrup and cause it to solidify)
- Keep whisking the eggs whites and sugar syrup for about another 5 minutes.
- Cut a disk of chocolate brownie about 1cm larger than the mould you used for your ice cream.
- Place your meringue mixture into a piping bag.
- Remove the ice cream from the mould and place onto the brownie base. Pipe the meringue around, encasing the ice cream and ensuring there are no gaps.
- At this point you can either bake in the oven at 200′c, or if you’re feeling flash and cheffy, and want to impress your girl, whip out your blow-torch, and cook the meringue until nicely browned. (Please just put it in the oven if you’ve had a few glasses of wine).
- Serve and eat immediately, before the ice cream melts.
Our work here is done………..
……….the rest is up to you!