This is the second time I've intentionally set fire to this cutesy confection. What's the appeal? Maybe I feel the cupcake could use a break from its curlicued reputation. Or maybe it appeals to my inner juvenile delinquent who loves to play with matches. All I know for sure is, this is one incredibly delicious show-stopping dessert! It's a perfect dramatic finale for any dinner party.
Baked Alaska is a layered dessert consisting of cake, ice cream and sweet meringue, so it wasn't terribly difficult to translate into cupcake form. To begin, you'll need a "naked" cupcake - no wrappers! They'd catch fire, and we certainly don't want burning paper on our delicious treat.
You have two options to obtain your "naked" cupcakes: 1.) Bake cupcakes without liners in a greased and floured cupcake pan. 2.) For easy clean-up, use your least cutesy cupcake papers and just peel them away before you begin assembling the cakes. I'm all for the latter - one less pan to wash. Inexpensive parchment paper liners will do just fine.
To make the blue-flame magic happen, turn down the lights and sprinkle a couple of tablespoons of warmed brandy over each meringue-coated cupcake. Ignite with a grill lighter or a long fireplace match. Please note that I used a little more brandy on these cupcakes for photography purposes. I needed a longer burn time so I could get a good picture of the flame. (I ate one of these cupcakes after photographing and it was a little strong - made my tongue tingly!).
Back when I made Flaming Strawberries on Cupcakes, I didn't know heating the liquor would help it catch fire easier. Try it! It makes all the difference!
- My pal Meaghan of The Decorated Cookie has a new book available called Sugarlicious! I recieved my copy last Thursday, and it is a delight to read! Lots of edible crafty goodness in there. I recommend!
- Slight freak-out at the realization that in just a few short months, I'll be making a wedding cake that serves 200 people! Jesus take the wheel.
- Bon Appetit included me and some of my bloggy pals in their Red Velvet round-up. Check it out here!
- I'm still working on answering your letters! (Just an update in case you haven't received your reply yet.)
- My fur-baby Churro hurt his paw while playing outside, which resulted in a trip to the pet ER. He's doing better, but gosh - was I ever worried! I really don't know how parents of human children do it. You have my utmost respect!
Flaming Baked Alaska Cupcakes:
Yield: 10-12 cupcakes [click for printable version]
Use your favorite cupcake recipe, or my Basic Vanilla Cupcake recipe (below)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
6 large egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2-2 cups brandy, warmed on the stove top