Chocolate, Coffee & Hazelnut Baked Alaska

December 13, 2022
0 Ratings
Photo by Julia Gartland
  • Prep time 6 hours 25 minutes
  • Cook time 50 minutes
  • makes 1 baked Alaska
Author Notes

Mainly, there are three components to this dish: cake topped with some ice cream and then covered in beautiful, silky meringue. And, for added contrast, I am flavoring all three with different, but complementary things, so that when it comes together it's just amazing. You’ll want to start with the ice cream because that's going to take the longest. And, for that, I'm going to make a nice custard base flavored with instant coffee; I absolutely love coffee flavorings in my sweets. After making the base, you’ll want to chill the custard for at least 20 minutes, so that the base is cool when it goes into the ice cream maker. And from there, time is really your best asset. Baked Alaska is most successful when the ice cream can firm up and chill for as long as possible, and when assembling for the final flash of meringue in the oven, you’ll want to work as quickly as possible to end up with this showstopper.
Chetna Makan

What You'll Need
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Chocolate, Coffee & Hazelnut Baked Alaska
  • Coffee Ice Cream
  • 250 milliliters whole milk
  • 150 milliliters heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon instant coffee
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 70 grams superfine sugar
  • Chocolate Cake
  • 120 grams unsalted softened butter, plus more for greasing the tin
  • 120 grams superfine sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 125 grams all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 50 grams 70% dark chocolate, melted
  • Hazelnut Meringue
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 200 grams superfine sugar
  • 1 pinch cream of tartar
  • 30 grams roasted hazelnuts, chopped, divided
  1. Make the ice cream: Chill the bowl of an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions. Heat the milk and cream in a medium saucepan over medium heat and as soon as it comes to a simmer, remove from the heat and stir in the instant coffee. In a large heatproof bowl whisk the egg yolks and sugar for 2 minutes until creamy and pale. Whisking constantly, slowly pour the hot milk mixture into the egg mixture, then immediately pour back into the saucepan. Cook for 5 to 6 minutes over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture starts to thicken and coats the back of the spoon.
  2. Pour the custard through a fine mesh sieve into a large bowl. Place in the refrigerator and chill for at least 30 minutes (or overnight if you can) to cool it slightly. Pour the cooled custard into the chilled bowl of the ice cream maker. Churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions until the mixture is the consistency of soft-serve ice cream. Line an 8-inch-wide (about 1 quart) freezer-safe bowl with 2 layers of plastic wrap with a long overhang on all sides. Pour the soft ice cream into the prepared bowl, fold the plastic overhang over the top, and freeze until fully set, at least 5 or 6 hours (overnight is best).
  3. Up to 24 hours before you plan to serve the baked Alaska, make the cake. Heat the oven to 350°F/180°C. Grease an 8-inch round cake tin with butter and line with parchment paper.
  4. In a large bowl, use a whisk, wooden spoon, or an electric mixer to beat the butter and sugar until light and creamy. Beat in the eggs until combined. Mix in the flour and baking powder until just combined, then mix in the melted chocolate. Scrape the batter into the prepared tin and bake for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Place on a wire rack and cool completely in the tin.
  5. When you are ready to serve the baked Alaska, make the meringue. In a large bowl, whisk the egg whites until you get soft peaks. Whisking constantly, slowly add the sugar until combined. Add the cream of tartar and continue to whisk until the meringue has firm peaks, and is shiny and stiff. Fold in half (15 grams) of the hazelnuts.
  6. Preheat the oven to 425°F/220°C. Unmold the cake onto a flat cookie sheet (or a standard rimmed half sheet pan) and remove the parchment paper—the flat side of the cake should be facing up. Working quickly, remove the bowl of ice cream from the freezer and unwrap the plastic overhang from the surface. Carefully pull the molded ice cream out of the bowl and invert the ice cream over the cake, then peel off the plastic wrap. Spread the meringue all over the exposed ice cream and cake, using the back of a spoon to make decorative peaks (alternatively, transfer the meringue to a piping bag and pipe a design.) Sprinkle the remaining hazelnuts over the meringue. Bake for 7 to 8 minutes, until the meringue is golden. Serve immediately.

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