Hot Cold Summer

Summer has officially arrived! Temperatures are rising and we’re trading in our usual steaming cuppa joe for the iced variety, and our craving for ice cream and other frozen treats is at its peak!

Despite all the ice cream brands out there, there are times when this cold, creamy delicacy can come off as unexciting and leave us wanting for more. That’s why The Maya Kitchen has come up with a simply delicious recipe that combines our favorite frozen dessert with the crowning glory of any exceptional meal: cake!

Given the choice between ice cream and cake, why not have both? Allow us to introduce one of our favorites: the Baked Alaska. This super cool treat promises the best of both worlds.

The Baked Alaska is a traditional American dessert that originated in New York City, first served at the world famous Delmonico’s. Chef Charles Ranhofer created this dish in honor of Alaska becoming part of the U.S.A. in 1867. Chef Ranhofer originally called it the Alaska, Florida; a play on the hot and cold elements of the dish. It is also known as the Norwegian Omelette.

What’s interesting about the Baked Alaska is that it needs to be baked and frozen at the same time. Sounds contradictory, we know, but the results are amazing!

So let’s discuss the hot and cold elements of the Baked Alaska. The hot element consists of baking a chiffon cake, which is very light and spongy in texture. Unlike other cakes, chiffon is made with vegetable oil instead of butter. It’s also very moist and ideal for frozen fillings.

The cold element is, of course, the ice cream. Choose any flavor you want or go for those tubs that feature three different flavors if you’re feeling adventurous. Once the layers are done, add the ice cream to serve as your filling, then ice the entire cake with meringue. Pop the cake in the freezer for a bit if the ice cream starts to melt.

Then, place your cake—icing and all—back in the oven to bake again. “But won’t the ice cream melt?” Nope. The meringue serves as insulation, because science! The key is not to keep the cake in the oven too long. Once its done, serve it immediately. This can be a complicated process, especially since we live in a tropical country where everything frozen melts in no time.

To make things easier, but not any less yummy, we at The Maya Kitchen have come up with a simple Mini Baked Alaska recipe, which doesn’t require you to bake the ice cream, ensuring its solidity and coolness. Enjoy!

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