Winter Baked Alaska with Plums, Espresso and Pistachio Nuts

Winter Baked Alaska with Plums, Espresso and Pistachio Nuts
Difficulty - Medium
Prep time - 20 minutes
Cook time - 5-6 hours the day before, 40 minutes the next day
Serves - 6-8

Winter Baked Alaska with Plums, Espresso and Pistachio Nuts

Bring some drama and delight to the dinner table with this seriously impressive and equally delicious dessert. Although there are a few steps involved and it can be time consuming, the recipe is simple enough and well worth the wait. Hidden inside are layers of plum and espresso ice-creams, enveloped in a light buttery cake, then smothered in soft meringue

Tips with Butter

Keep a block of Westgold Butter in your freezer for those baking or white sauce emergencies.

Ingredients

Cake:
200g Westgold butter, soft
1 cup caster sugar
4 eggs, beaten
¼ cup natural unsweetened yoghurt
1 ½ cups self-raising flour, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla paste

Coffee Ice cream for inside layer:
300g vanilla ice cream
2 teaspoon instant coffee granules dissolved in a shot (30ml) of espresso
(You could use 30ml instant coffee if you don’t have a coffee machine, however espresso will give a deeper flavour and give a speckled granule effect to the icecream. Alternatively you can buy a shot or two of espresso coffee from a coffee shop, or buy 300g coffee icecream instead of vanilla).

Plum Ice cream for the outer layer:
800g vanilla ice cream
3 Tablespoon freeze-dried plum powder
(If you can’t access the plum powder, you can buy plum ice cream instead of vanilla).

To serve:
200g black doris plums
100g chopped pistachios

Notes:
You will need enough room in your freezer for a 20 cm bowl and a 10 cm bowl.
This recipe also uses espresso coffee. We have provided alternatives if you don’t have a coffee machine at home.

Method

The day before:
Preheat the oven to 160deg.
Cream and butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
Gradually add the beaten eggs, vanilla & lastly the yoghurt.
Fold in the flour. Spoon into a 20cm paper lined cake tin.
Ideally aim for a 4-6cm deep tin as the cake will need to be sliced horizontally into 4 pieces that are around 1-2cm thick.
Bake for 50-60 minutes.
Leave to cool in the tin.

Assembly:
Slice the cake horizontally into 4 thin slices, like sheets. (This can be tricky, don’t worry if the pieces are messy). Line a 20cm bowl with plastic wrap and cover the inside and bottom of the bowl with the slices of cake, cutting them into wedges to fit snuggly. Reserve a slice of cake to cover the top. Place in the freezer.

Coffee Ice cream for inside layer:
Line a 10cm bowl with plastic wrap. Place the 300g vanilla ice cream in a mixer and add the coffee mixture. Mix quickly and spoon into the bowl and place back in the freezer for 3-4 hours to harden.

After 3-4 hours:
Plum Ice cream for the outside layer:
Take the vanilla ice cream out of the freezer for 10 minutes to soften a little. Spoon into a mixer and add the plum powder and mix quickly to prevent it from defrosting too much. Spoon the plum ice cream into the frozen cake lined bowl around the edges allowing a 10cm space in the middle to insert the coffee ice cream.

Take the coffee ice cream out of the freezer, remove from bowl and remove the plastic wrap. Place the coffee ice cream into the middle of the frozen cake lined bowl.
Top with the reserved slice of cake and press down gently. Freeze overnight.

The next day:
Espresso glaze:
1 cup water
½ cup brown sugar
Double shot (60ml) of espresso (can be instant if you don’t have a coffee machine)
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules

In a saucepan, boil the sugar and water and reduce by ¾. Add both the espresso/coffee liquid, then add the granules and reduce until a syrup consistency. Set aside to cool.

Tip the ice cream cake out of the mould and onto a paper lined baking tray, remove the plastic wrap.
Note that the ice cream could begin to melt as you prepare the meringue. If it does, place back in freezer to harden, right up until you are ready to spread the meringue over.

Meringue:
3 egg whites
165g caster sugar

Preheat the oven to 200deg. Whip the egg whites until stiff and gradually add the sugar and beat until glossy and thick. Spread over the frozen ice cream cake and bake for 8-10 minutes until starting to brown lightly. Place into serving plate, pour over espresso glaze (it must be cool, not warm), top with extra plum pieces and sprinkle with chopped pistachios. Serve immediately.

Winter Baked Alaska flatlay lr

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