When I need an outstanding dessert for a celebration, I turn purchased pound cake into individual Baked Alaskas. Guests beam when this eye-catching treat is set in front of them.—Diane Halferty, Corpus Christi, Texas
- 1/2 cup cherry preserves
- 3 teaspoons cherry brandy, divided
- 2 cups cherry ice cream, softened
- 1 loaf (10-3/4 ounces) frozen pound cake, thawed
- 3 egg whites
- 1/2 cup sugar
- In a small bowl, combine preserves and 1 teaspoon brandy. Line four 6-oz. ramekins with plastic wrap; spoon ice cream into ramekins. Make an indentation in the center of each; fill with cherry mixture. Freeze until firm.
- Split pound cake horizontally into thirds. Using a 6-oz. ramekin, cut pound cake into four circles (save remaining cake for another use). Brush circles with remaining brandy.
- In a large heavy saucepan, combine egg whites and sugar. With a hand mixer, beat on low speed for 1 minute. Continue beating over low heat until egg mixture reaches 160°, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a bowl; beat until stiff glossy peaks form and sugar is dissolved.
- Place cake circles on an ungreased foil-lined baking sheet; top each with an inverted ice cream mold. Remove plastic. Immediately spread meringue over ice cream, sealing to edges of cakes.
- Heat with a creme brulee torch or broil 8 in. from the heat for 3-4 minutes or until meringue is lightly browned. Serve immediately. Yield: 4 servings.
Originally published as Baked Alaskas with Tipsy Cherry Centers in Taste of Home's Holiday & Celebrations Cookbook Annual 2010, p67
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