Saturday, June 16, 2012

Baked Alaska with LUV to Southwest

As you might recall, the first cake I tried to back for the Southwest Airlines birthday cake contest was a flop.  The cake collapsed.

I left the cake out all day, wondering what to do with the thing.  Andrew wanted me to slather it in Nutella.  I finally decided on a better idea: Baked Alaska.  As much as I love to bake, I actually don't really enjoy eating cake very much.  Ice cream is another story.  I love ice cream.  Indeed, every year on my birthday, I get an ice cream cake.  So good.

I took my sinkhole cake, and I sliced it up.  I set a few layers on a bake dish and smothered it in a quart of ice cream.  I used the rest of the layers of my cake failure and finished wrapping the ice cream so that the ice cream was completely covered.  I drizzled a few tablespoons of leftover coffee over the cake, and I stuck it in the freezer.

That's when it occurred to me.  I just put a cake in the freezer.  Hello, wasn't I trying to come up with unique ideas for the cake competition?  Why wouldn't I decorate it for an extra entry in the "Baked with LUV" contest?

I started brain storming.  My plan quickly became to make the Baked Alaska look as fancy as possible.  On the side, in large lettering, I would write, "SWA," for Southwest Airlines.  I started to get really excited.  I could visualize the photo I'd put the Baked Alaska into.  Andrew and I would dress up.  I'd get some champagne flutes.  I'd put the dessert between the two of us at our kitchen table.  Maybe I'd light it with candles.  It would be a snapshot into a romantic evening shared by my husband and me and our Southwest Airlines Baked Alaska.  Surely, no one else would think to do the same thing!  Points for originality.

On Wednesday, Andrew stopped by his parents' house to borrow champagne flutes.  After dinner on Thursday, I made the meringue, which is used to decorate the Baked Alaska.  Oliver helped, as he was so excited to use the mixer again.  I pulled the Baked Alaska out of the freezer and frosted the whole cake with meringue, and then I piped designs all over it.  On the side, I wrote, "SWA," just as planned.  I stuck it in the freezer to set, waiting to bake it when the kids went to bed.

As soon as the kiddos fell asleep, I preheated the oven and ran upstairs to get ready.  I put on a dress and tied my hair into an up-do.  Andrew put on a dress shirt and pants.  I love that man.

After the Baked Alaska was done baking, Andrew lit candles on it.  I got the camera set up for self-portrait, and we took a few photos before digging into the dessert.  If the judges could taste the various cakes, the Baked Alaska would be the winner, hands down.  It was so good.  I devoured two slices.

Here's my Baked Alaska submission for the "Baked with LUV" contest:

So good...