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S’mores Baked Alaska

Bring back this classic dessert to add flair to any dinner party

Baked Alaska made a comeback in the 1990s, but hasn’t been a Gotham favorite for a while now. Which is interesting given that Delmonico’s, America’s first fine-dining restaurant and a New York institution, is credited with importing it from France.

If baked Alaska reappears again, it should be in s’mores form! For me, the signature meringue and combination of hot and cold elements recalls all that is great about the fireside treat. I savored incredible upmarket s’mores all across the city, from Dominique Ansel’s famous frozen version that’s torched to order to a standout interpretation at The Standard East Village’s hot new restaurant Narcissa. But not one s’mores baked Alaska.

So I’m leading the charge. Here, a buttery cookie base is topped with molten chocolate cake, a scoop of the best coffee ice cream you can find, and finished off in charred sticky meringue. It’s rich and the most delicious dessert. — Yasmin Newman, author of The Desserts of New York (And How to Eat Them All)

Notes

Make sure the ice cream is nice and hard or it will melt before you’ve finished assembling.

Ingredients

  • 5 1/2 Ounces dark chocolate (55 percent cocoa solids), finely chopped
  • 4 1/2 Ounces unsalted butter, chopped
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 Cup caster (superfine) sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons almond meal
  • 2 Tablespoons plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 1/4 Teaspoon fine salt
  • 6 large scoops coffee ice cream

For the butter cookies:

  • 1/2 Cup plain (all purpose) flour
  • 1/2 Teaspoon bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
  • 1/2 Teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoon caster (superfine) sugar
  • 1/4 Cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 3 Ounces unsalted butter, chopped, softened

For the marshmallow meringue:

  • 8 egg whites
  • 2 Cups caster (superfine) sugar
  • 1/2 Cup glucose syrup

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Grease six 150-milliliter (5-fluid-ounce) ramekins and place on a baking tray.

Place the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of gently simmering water (don’t let the bowl touch the water) and stir occasionally until melted and smooth. Set aside to cool.

Place the eggs, sugar, almond meal, flour and salt in a bowl and whisk until well combined. Add the chocolate mixture and stir until well combined, then divide evenly among the ramekins. Bake the cakes for 13 minutes or until the tops are just cooked (the cakes will be slightly gooey in the center). Cool completely in the ramekins, then turn out and set aside until needed.

For the butter cookies:

To make the butter cookies, sift the flour, bicarbonate of soda, and baking powder into a bowl. Add the sugars and butter and, using an electric mixer, beat until the mixture clumps together. Shape into a disc, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F.

Roll out the dough between two sheets of baking paper to a rough 3 millimeters (1/8 inches) thick, 25 centimeters (10 inches) square. Transfer to a baking tray and remove the top sheet of baking paper, then bake for 8 minutes or until just golden and still soft. Remove from the oven. While still warm, using an 8.5-centimeter (3 1/4-inch) cookie cutter (or a cutter slightly bigger than the cakes), cut out six rounds, then cool completely on the tray with the offcuts (you get to snack on these later!).

For the marshmallow meringue:

To make the marshmallow meringue, place all the ingredients in a large heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of gently simmering water (don’t let the bowl touch the water). Cook, whisking, for 2 minutes or until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is warm. Remove from the heat and, using an electric mixer, whisk for 5 minutes or until stiff peaks form and the mixture is cool.

Just before serving, fill a piping (icing) bag fitted with a 9-millimeter (1/2-inch) plain nozzle with meringue. Divide the cookies among serving plates. If necessary, warm the chocolate cakes for 20 seconds in the microwave until just gooey in the center but not warm, then place on top of the cookies. Using an ice cream scoop, place a generous scoop of ice cream on one cake. Working quickly, pipe buds of meringue all over to cover the ice cream, cake, and base completely. (Alternatively, use a spatula to cover them freeform.) Repeat with the remaining cakes and meringue. Using a kitchen blowtorch, scorch the meringue, then serve immediately.

Excerpted with permission from The Desserts of New York (And How to Eat Them All) by Yasmin Newman (Hardie Grant Books, 2017)

Nutritional Facts
Servings6
Calories Per Serving1186
Total Fat54g83%
Sugar152gN/A
Saturated32g100%
Cholesterol211mg70%
Protein14g28%
Carbs170g57%
Vitamin A424µg47%
Vitamin B120.8µg12.8%
Vitamin B60.1mg5.9%
Vitamin C0.8mg1.3%
Vitamin D1µgN/A
Vitamin E1mg7%
Vitamin K4µg6%
Calcium258mg26%
Fiber3g12%
Folate (food)26µgN/A
Folate equivalent (total)26µg6%
Iron2mg9%
Magnesium64mg16%
Monounsaturated15gN/A
Niacin (B3)0.5mg2.6%
Phosphorus286mg41%
Polyunsaturated2gN/A
Potassium540mg15%
Riboflavin (B2)0.9mg55.5%
Sodium435mg18%
Sugars, added152gN/A
Thiamin (B1)0.1mg7.4%
Trans1gN/A
Zinc2mg14%