Baked “Caked” Alaska is a luscious, unique ice cream cake with two moist chocolate cake layers, an ice cream center, and covered with light, toasted meringue. Make Baked “Caked” Alaska for an extraordinary birthday cake or if you need a fabulous make-ahead dessert. Everyone will go crazy for this heavenly ice cream cake because it is in a class all it’s own!
Baked “Caked” Alaska
As you know, I’m all about making epic cakes to celebrate birthdays. As Clara’s eleventh birthday approached, I excitedly shared with her my birthday-cake-creation epiphany. She responded with a justifiable amount of excitement. She knew I wouldn’t do her wrong after last year’s smashing success.
I had a perfect opportunity to practice my vision since Ryan’s birthday is two weeks prior to her’s. My attempt resulted in a disastrous, melting ice cream cake failure in my freezer. I learned a valuable lesson when it comes to ice cream cakes – extremely cold does not necessarily mean extremely frozen. To avoid a mess in your freezer, which is significantly more challenging to clean up than a NOT FROZEN mess, make sure you give all the layers enough time to throughly freeze.
Fortunately Ryan’s only criteria for consumable sweets is they must involve sugar, so he was more than down with the doctored-up cake I presented him. Kudos for taking one for the team and enjoying the not-so-perfect Baked “Caked” Alaska. Clara’s Baked “Caked” Alaska was handedly more successful in the looks department, but both of them we were equally devoured.
Her birthday involved our inaugural hosting of a girl’s sleepover party. Whoa. We witnessed a mystifying anthropological transformation as she interacted with other 11 year old girls. The girls automatically assimilated into one shrieking, garrulous, animated, impetuous gaggle, and any distinctive, personal characteristic of our formerly-familiar daughter instantaneously vanished.
They were all sweet, well behaved, and had a great time together, but Ryan and I just kept looking at each other like a group of jovial aliens unexpectedly took residence in our home. Observing our eldest being catapulted into a world we are not yet familiar with was a little disquieting. She was suddenly inexplicably singing every word of songs we only briefly listened to in the car, talking about BOYS, and using nonsensical phrases I guess you had to be a pre-adolescent to understand.
Apparently we’ve arrived at the point of no return in parenting. Her world is no longer just us. We’ll all have to learn to reside with some possible demons up ahead such as peers, boys, clicks, and insuppressible technology. Clara insists she will be an anomaly to the typical teenager, but I am not naive enough to put all my eggs in that basket. She does biologically share 50 percent of my genes. Oy vey.
- 1 recipe for 2 layer chocolate cake, baked and cooled (I always use this one)
- 1.5 quart of mint chocolate chip ice cream, softened for 30 minutes
- 6 egg whites, room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- pinch cream of tarter
Make 2 layer chocolate cake according to recipe. After layers are completely cooled, wrap each individually in plastic wrap and freeze for at least 2 hours.
In one same sized round cake pan you made the cake layers in, place 2 long sheets of foil, criss-crossed and pressed solidly against bottom and sides. Evenly spread the softened ice cream in the foil-lined cake pan. Loosely cover with excess foil hanging over edges and freeze until firm, at least 6 hours or overnight.
To assemble cake, place 2 long sheets of plastic wrap criss-crossed and pressed solidly against bottom and sides of the other cake pan. Remove cake layers and ice cream layer from freezer. Unwrap the first cake layer and place in the plastic-lined cake pan right side up.
Lift the ice cream layer out of the pan and invert on top of first cake layer, gently peeling away foil. Unwrap second cake layer and place on top of ice cream layer, right side up. Lift up the excess hanging plastic wrap to cover the sides of the cake and then use more plastic wrap to cover the whole thing. Place the assembled cake back in the freezer for at least a couple hours.
If you plan on finishing making the cake that day, set out your egg whites to come to room temperature.
Put the egg whites and cream of tarter in a large heatproof bowl. Set the bowl over a pot of lightly simmering water, making sure the bowl does not directly touch the simmering water.
Using a hand mixer beat the egg whites on medium high, until the eggs are warm to the touch, about 3 minutes.
Remove from the bowl from heat and continue to beat on high, gradually adding the sugar a couple tablespoons at a time. Beat until all the sugar is dissolved, and the meringue has very stiff glossy peaks.
If you are browning the meringue in the oven, preheat to 500ºF. Remove and unwrap the assembled cake from the freezer. If you are using the oven method, place on an oven safe platter or place cake in a shallow pie tin. If you are browning the meringue with a torch, any serving platter will do.
Spread the meringue all over the cake, making sure everything is covered completely. You can use then use the back of a spoon to give it swirly peaks. Use a blow torch to brown meringue or place in oven for 3-4 minutes, watching very carefully!
Serve immediately or place back in freezer uncovered until ready to serve. Let sit out for 30 minutes before serving.
I used a blow torch to brown my meringue because I have heard mixed reviews about the oven method. The key is to watch it carefully and make sure there are no gaps of cake or ice cream showing through the meringue.
To slice the cake easily, let it set out for at least 30 minutes before serving. Run very hot water to heat the knife in between slices, drying off with a towel before each slice.