Baked Alaska and Four-Year Blogiversary
The Bite-Sized Baker blog turns FOUR today! I thought I would celebrate with a super exciting announcement and a super retro dessert, Baked Alaska! This is hands down the most amazing dessert I have ever made.
The Baked Alaska dessert as we know it was created in 1867 by French chef, Charles Ranhofer, at Delmonico’s restaurant in New York to celebrate the United States’ purchase of Alaska… But there are some historic claims that Thomas Jefferson served a very similar dessert in the White House as early as 1802!
This cake was phenomenal… Like happy dance, face covered in ice cream, finger-looking good. It is essentially an ice cream cake that’s smothered in a light, fluffy, and marshmallowy meringue and then toasted in the oven or with a kitchen torch (think s’mores ice cream cake)! Since the cake goes through various freezing stages, the ice cream doesn’t melt when you torch the meringue, and you have this sensational hot and cold combination… It is basically all that is wonderful in the world and a true showstopper! Especially when you bring it to the gym with you at 7AM and toast it with a kitchen torch just before serving…
I made everything from scratch, but if you are short on time, you can easily substitute your favorite store-bought ice cream and box-mix cake for an equally delicious dessert!
Now, the moment I’ve been waiting for… time to share my exciting news! I cannot believe I’ve had this little blog for FOUR YEARS now! Granted, I haven’t always been the most consistent with my blog (i.e., taking 2-month hiatuses at any given time), this blog has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life and has shaped who I am today. I AM THE BITE-SIZED BAKER.
This little space is an extension of myself and I decided it was time to finally invest in a site that reflected myself visually, as well… And with the help of my lovely fiancé and the lovely duo behind Purr Design, I am FINALLY giving The Bite-Sized Baker blog the much-needed facelift it so badly deserves!!!
There will be a new layout with no more endless scrolling through hundreds of posts, a visual recipe index, printable recipes, and so much more! I am BEYOND excited for this next chapter of the blog and I hope you all enjoy the end result as much as I will!
Baked Alaska recipe from The Bite-Sized Baker:
3 pints of ice cream of your choice
A Wiseman’s Chocolate Cake from Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream Desserts
1 ¼ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 ¼ cups granulated sugar
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
4 ½ ounces unsweetened chocolate (99% cacao), finely chopped
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup hot coffee
2/3 cup sour cream (I substituted plain, full-fat yogurt)
1 large egg, beaten
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 large egg whites
Pinch of cream of tartar
1 cup granulated sugar
Pinch of fine sea salt
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- To make the chocolate cake, position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch round cake pan. Place a round of parchment in the bottom and butter it, then dust the pan with flour, and shake out the excess.
- Whisk the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl.
- Combine the chocolate and cocoa. Pour the hot coffee over the mixture and whisk until smooth. Whisk in the sour cream, egg, and vanilla. Stir the sour cream mixture into the flour mixture until just combined.
- Scrape the batter into the cake pan and smooth the top with the back of a spoon. Bake for 40-45 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs clinging to it. Let cool completely in the pan on the rack. Invert the cake and remove the parchment.
- To assemble the cake, line a 9-inch round bowl with plastic wrap and fill the bowl with softened ice cream, place the piece of cake on top of the bowl of ice cream, and cover with plastic wrap. Freeze until firm, at least 4 hours.
- To make the meringue, put the egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment and begin whipping the egg whites on medium-high speed. When the egg whites start to foam, add the cream of tartar. Gradually add the granulated sugar and salt and continue whipping on medium-high speed. Once all the sugar has been added, add vanilla extract, turn the speed up to high, and whip until the egg whites are glossy and hold stiff peaks.
- To serve the cake, remove the ice cream cake from the freezer, turn upside down onto a heatproof serving platter, and remove plastic wrap. Cover the cake completely with meringue and place in the freezer, uncovered, until ready to serve. When ready to serve, remove the cake from the freezer and use a propane torch to brown the meringue. Slice and serve immediately. The assembled cake can be stored in your freezer for up to 7 days.