February 1st is an annual celebration named National Baked Alaska Day.
History of National Baked Alaska Day
Baked Alaska is a decadent dessert made with ice cream, muffins, and toast. Although the name "grilled Alaska" didn't appear until the 19th century, this dish is part of a long culinary tradition.
Baked Alaska is made by placing sponge cake slices in the bottom of a cake pan, coating them with vanilla ice cream, and then completely coating them with whipped meringue mixture. The whole thing is baked in the oven at very high heat for a short time to allow the meringue to solidify and brown. The meringue protects the ice cream from melting, thus giving this dessert its distinctive hot/cold feel and the creamy/crispy texture so loved.
The concept of serving ice cream and cake together dates back to the Renaissance. The chefs of this era were the first to adorn their baked goods with a topping. This laid the groundwork for Baked Alaska, but it doesn't account for two of the dessert's distinguishing features — temperature and texture.
The Chinese were the first culture to cook cakes on a creamy filling, resulting in a delicious combination of hot and cold ingredients. Credit is also attributed to the American physicist Benjamin Thompson, who tested the heat resistance of whipped egg whites and discovered how to make meringues.
Whether you want to call it Baked Alaska, glace au four, omelette a la norvegienne or Norwegian omelette, celebrate National Baked Alaska Day with a scrumptious serving of this unique dessert!
How to celebrate National Baked Alaska Day
Cake and ice cream go well together. What better way to enjoy it with a topping of meringue? You can also take one of your favorite recipes and name it after a monumental life event.
Use #NationalBakedAlaskaDay to post on social media.
Order some grilled Alaska or test your craft with this recipe: Baked Alaska Recipe.
2 liters vanilla ice cream, soft
1 (18.25 ounces) white cake mix
½ teaspoon almond extract
8 egg whites
⅛ Teaspoon cream tartar
⅛ Teaspoon salt
1 cup white sugar
- Step1: Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch round mixing bowl or 8-inch deep square box with foil. Spread the cream evenly in the container, securely packaged. Make firm by covering and freezing (about 8 hours).
- Step2: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour in an 8x8 inch pan.
- Step3: Prepare cake mix with eggs and extract almond. Pour into the prepared pan.
- Step4: Bake in the preheated oven according to package directions, until the center of the cake is springy to the touch.
- Step5: Beat egg whites with cream of tartar, salt and sugar until stiff peaks form.
- Step6: Line a baking tray with parchment or thick brown paper. Place the cake in the center. Flip the whipped cream over the cake. Quickly and carefully spread the meringue over the cake and cream, all the way to the paper to seal. Return to freezer 2 hours.
- Step7: Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
- Step8: Baked Alaska on lowest shelf, 8 to 10 minutes, or until meringue is lightly browned. Serve at the same time.
ObservedNational Baked Alaska Day has been observed annually on February 1st.
Saturday, February 1st, 2020
Monday, February 1st, 2021
Tuesday, February 1st, 2022
Wednesday, February 1st, 2023
Thursday, February 1st, 2024