Why is a baked Alaska called a baked Alaska?

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asked Apr 16, 2022 in Recipes by whatyourgane (940 points)
Why is a baked Alaska called a baked Alaska?

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answered Apr 16, 2022 by Blaesing (3,900 points)
Baked Alaska is called baked Alaska because the name was coined at Antoine's, a restaurant in New Orleans, Louisiana, US, by its chef de cuisine Antoine Alciatore in 1867 to honor the acquisition by the United States of Alaska from the Russian Empire on March 10 that year.

The ice cream in the baked Alaska stays frozen, even when placed in a hot oven, by taking advantage of the insulating properties of the trapped air in the cellular structure of the foam components (the meringue and sponge cake).

The ice cream is surrounded by meringue and sponge cake, which conduct heat very poorly.

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), third president of the United States from 1801-1809, was one of the first to serve ice cream at a state banquet in the White House.

He is reported to have served ice cream encased in hot pastry at a White House dinner during his presidency.

Baked Alaska, also known as Bombe Alaska, omelette norvégienne, omelette surprise, or omelette sibérienne depending on the country, is a dessert consisting of ice cream and cake topped with browned meringue.

The ice cream is surrounded by meringue and sponge cake, which conduct heat very poorly.

This keeps the intense heat in the oven from reaching the ice cream.

A Baked Alaska comprises of ice cream covered by cake and meringue.

When it bakes in the oven, the meringue acts like an insulator around the ice cream, so it won't melt, providing it sets for long enough in the freezer beforehand.

What is the difference between bombe Alaska and baked Alaska?

A bombe Alaska is coated with hot, high-proof rum before serving and set alight or flambéed.

A baked Alaska is browned using a torch or the broiler setting in an oven.

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