An impressive dessert, Baked Alaska is sponge cake topped with ice-cream and covered with meringue. It is not difficult to prepare but it does need very speedy, last-minute preparation before serving.
1 tablespoon butter
3 oz. plus
1 tablespoon flour
6 oz. plus
1 tablespoon castor sugar
4 egg yolks, at room temperature
4 egg whites, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
8 oz. apricot jam
2 pints vanilla ice-cream, softened
6 egg whites
½ teaspoon salt
6 oz. castor sugar
Preheat the oven to moderate 350°F (Gas Mark 4, 180°C). Grease two 8-inch sandwhich tins with the butter.
Mix the 1 tablespoon of flour with the 1 tablespoon of castor sugar in a cup and dust the greased sandwich tins with the mixture. Shake out any excess flour and sugar.
Put the egg yolks in a medium-sized mixing bowl. Add the vanilla essence and beat with a wire whisk or rotary beater until the mixture is pale and thick. Add the sugar, reserving 4 tablespoons, and beat to mix.
In another mixing bowl beat the egg whites with a wire whisk or rotary beater until they form soft peaks. Add the reserved 4 tablespoons of sugar a spoon ful at a time and continue beating until the whites are stiff.
Fold the beaten egg whites into the egg yolk mixture, with a metal spoon, until they are well mixed.
Sift the remaining flour with the baking powder and salt into the egg mixture and fold in with the spoon.
Pour the mixture evenly into the two cake tins and bake in the centre of the oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until the cakes are done. Test the cakes by inserting a skewer into the cakes, if it comes out clean the cake is cooked. Turn the cakes out carefully on to a rack to cool.
When the cakes have cooled spread one cake with the apricot jam. Put the second cake on top of it. Trim off the corners of the cake with a knife to make an oval shape.
Put the ice-cream on a sheet of alumin-ium foil and mould it gently to the size of the cake. Cover with foil and place in the frozen food storage compartment of the refrigerator to become hard.
Preheat the oven to very hot 450°F (Gas Mark 8, 230 ‘Q.
In a medium-sized bowl, using a bal- An impressive-looking dessert, Baked Alaska is a sponge cake topped with ice-cream and meringue. loon whisk or rotary beater, whip the egg whites and salt until they are stiff. Beating continuously, add the sugar a little at a time. Continue beating until the whites are stiff and glossy. Do not overbeat or the whites will begin to collapse.
Put the cake on a flat baking sheet. Remove the ice-cream from the refrigera-tor, take off the foil and place the ice- cream on top of the cake. Using a spatula, cover the outside of the cake and the ice-cream with the meringue mixture, making sure there is no cake or ice-cream showing. This must be done very quickly and the meringue must cover the icecream and cake completely or the icecream will melt. As an added decoration, toasted almonds may be sprinkled on to the meringue.
Put the baking sheet in the centre of the oven and leave it for 3 to 4 minutes, until the meringue turns a pale golden colour. Serve at once.
A traditional English dessert and a great favourite with children, Bakewell Tart is both easy to make and inexpensive.
4 oz. flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 oz. butter
1 oz. vegetable fat
1 tablespoon iced water
1 tablespoons raspberry jam egg yolks
1 oz. fresh breadcrumbs
1 oz. sugar
1 tablespoons melted butter
3 oz. ground almonds grated rind and juice of 1 lemon 2 egg whites a pinch of salt
Preheat the oven to hot 425°F (Gas Mark 7, 220°C).
Sift the flour and salt into a medium-sized mixing bowl. Add the butter and vegetable fat and cut them into small pieces with a table knife. With your fingers, rub the fat into the flour until the mixture looks like fine breadcrumbs. Add the iced water and mix it in with the knife. Using your hands, mix and lightly knead the pastry until it is smooth. If the pastry is too dry, add a little more cold water. Pat the pastry into a ball, cover and put in the refrigerator to chill for 15 minutes.
On a lightly floured board, roll out the pastry and line an 8-inch flan tin. Spread a layer of jam on the bottom of the tart. Put the egg yolks in a medium-sized mixing bowl and beat well with a wooden spoon. Add the breadcrumbs, sugar, melted butter, almonds, grated lemon rind and lemon juice and mix well.
Beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt until they are stiff. Fold into the egg-yolk mixture. Spread over the jam. Place the tart in the centre of the oven. Bake for 30 minutes, or until the filling is firm and lightly browned. Serve at room temperature.