Baked Alaska

Pistachio Cake, vanilla ice cream, berry jam, lemon semifreddo, and meringue. This is decadent, delicious, and worth the time it takes to make it. I started with the NYT recipe and I added a layer of berry jam and vanilla ice cream.  You need to start this a day ahead of time.

Pistachio Cake
150 g butter
150 g egg whites, room temp
25 g almonds, toasted, cooled and finely ground
80 g whole pistachios, toasted, cooled and finely ground
160 g powdered sugar
pinch of salt
50 g flour
10 grams pistachio paste

Lemon Semifreddo
198 g sugar
133 ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
30 ml water
6 large egg yolks
zest of 3 lemons
½ teaspoon vanilla
355 ml heavy cream

Ice Cream
cups heavy cream
cup whole milk
⅔ cup sugar
⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt
large egg yolks

1 cup strawberries
1 cup raspberries
2 cups sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

396 g sugar
245 g egg whites


Brown butter and let cool to room temperature.

Heat oven to 350F. Line an 8” round cake pan with parchment paper and coat with nonstick spray. Set aside.

In stand mixer. Whisk egg whites until tripled in volume/stiff peaks.

On slow, whisk in toasted almonds, pistachios, sugar, salt and flour. Whisk in the pistachio paste until fully incorporated, then the browned butter.

Pour cake into prepared pan and bake until set, 20 to 25 minutes. All the cake to cool completely then remove from pan. Once cake is completely cooled, wrap in plastic wrap and set aside until you are ready to assemble.

Line a 5-6 cup metal bowl with plastic wrap and set aside. In a small saucepan combine sugar, 1 tablespoon lemon juice and water.  Let the liquid saturate the sugar before setting on heat. Cook over medium heat until mixture reached 250 degrees (10 minutes). Do not stir or swirl sugar. Cover with a tightfitting lid for a few seconds to create moisture if needed.

Whisk egg yolks in a bowl of an electric mixer at medium until they are thick and pale in color about 5 minutes.

When sugar reaches 250 remove from heat.  With the mixer on low speed carefully pour the sugar into the yolks down the side of the bowl. Whisk until fully incorporated.

Add zest, vanilla and remaining lemon juice and increase the speed to medium. Contine to beat until the mixture is completely cool; transfer to a large bowl.

Wipe out mixing bowl then whisk the heavy cream until it hold stiff peaks.  Gently mix the whipped cream into the lemon-sugar mixture util fully incorporated.

Pour the mixture into the prepared bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap and freeze until firm.

Place berries and sugar in a medium saucepan. Mash using a potato masher while bringing to a full boil over high heat. Boil hard for 5 minutes or so.  Take off heat and let cool before putting in the refrigerator.  Once chilled, spoon on a layer on top of the semifreddo and return to the freezer.

Ice Cream
In a small pot, simmer cream, milk, sugar and salt until sugar completely dissolves, about 5 minutes. Remove pot from heat. In a separate bowl, whisk yolks. Whisking constantly, slowly whisk about a third of the hot cream into the yolks, then whisk the yolk mixture back into the pot with the cream. Return pot to medium-low heat and gently cook until mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.

Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl. Cool mixture to room temperature. Cover and chill at least 4 hours or overnight.

Churn in an ice cream machine.  When done, cover the semifreddo and jam layer with the ice cream.  Smooth bottom and freeze until ready to assemble.

Bring a full of inch of water to a boil in a wide pot. Using a double boiler combine the sugar and egg whites and whisk until sugar dissolves about 5 minutes. Ru your finger across the bottom and make sure grains are dissolved.

Transfer mixture to stand mixer and whisk on high until the meringue is glossy and holds stiff peaks and no longer warm.  Transfer to a piping bag fitted with large star tip.


Remove semifreddo/jam/ice cream from mold and invert on top of cake creating a dome.

Working from the bottom, pipe the meringue around the entire dome.

Freeze until ready to serve.

Using a kitchen torch, brown until toasted all over.

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