After last week's Food & Wine fava bean debacle, you would think I would set it aside for a long, long time. Alas, no. Once I saw the photo of the Baked Alaska Birthday Cake in the recent mag, I had to make it for my dear birthday girl friend, Elisa.
Now, I will also admit that this recipe -- http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/baked-alaska-birthday-cake -- looks unbelievably complicated. But, it's not if you buy the chocolate pound cake. I couldn't find any, though, so the only un-lazy part of this process was scouring several stores for it. I settled on store-bought, store-made sliced chocolate cake in the bakery section of my Pavilions. It worked out just dandy.
The meringue also reads a complicated AND if you've never made it you might think "How could anything that dramatic be easy?" And it is! Ideally you will have a standing mixer. It will make it super easy. It's a 4 step process. Make the sugar syrup. Whip the egg whites. Throw it on the cake. Torch it.
So, yes, you need a kitchen torch. If you don't have a kitchen torch, let me tell you it is the absolutely most amazing kitchen tool. It is SOOOOOOOOOOO fun, easy to use and it creates drama in seconds.
I didn't do the pastry bag application of the meringue because I was a wee bit tipsy after we had all gone out for the birthday dinner....but my buddy, Daniel, who played slightly tipsy assistant, did a great job of creating peaks with the back of a spatula.
Don't be scared of this recipe. Also, use the birthday boy or girl's favorite ice creams. For instance, I found out -- sadly, after the fact -- that Elisa's favorite flavors are chocolate and peanute butter. I could have used that flavor ice cream. So choose flavors that work for the honoree.
Once it's done you can add decorations and candles galore...it all holds up just dandy!
So even when you don't make your own chocolate pound cake, people may be eating it for days....as seen in this video! LOL!
Happy Birthday to all the Lovely Libras!!!!! You guys are my faves!