Here is an updated version of the classic made from home-made ingredients (though you could substitute shop-bought) that actually makes a tasty and elegant dish that can give a party or a barbecue just that bit of a wow factor.
So I think it's time to rehabilitate the baked Alaska and it's time for you to see just how good the home-made version of this classic dessert can be.
Pineapple Baked AlaskaServes: 3–4
3 large egg whites
150g (3/4 cup) caster sugar
25g (1 oz) desiccated coconut
200g (7 oz) ready-made ginger cake or chocolate cake
6 slices of ripe, peeled, pineapple
4500ml (2 cups) vanilla ice cream (needs to be in a brick)
a few cherries and/or figs, to garnish
Method:Add the egg whites to a clean and dry bowl and whisk until they stand in soft peaks. Scatter over the sugar and whisk until stiff and glossy. Now fold in the coconut.
Slice the cake into two thick layers (best with a cake made in a loaf tin), ensuring that the cake pieces are the same rectangular shape as the ice cream. Cut the pineapple into triangles or quarters (cut over the cake to catch any drips).
Arrange one slice of cake on a baking sheet then sit the pineapple pieces on top. Top with the ice cream then add the second layer of cake.
Spread the meringue evenly over the cake and ice cream, ensuring that the whole is covered. Carefully transfer to a baking tray then set in an oven pre-heated to 230ºC (450ºF, Gas Mark 8) and bake for between 5 and 7 minutes, or until the meringue is beginning to turn golden brown in colour.
Serve immediately, topped with the fruit garnish.
If you are not making your own ice cream for this, then avoid soft scoop ice cream as this will melt too quickly whilst the baked alaska is in the oven.