Have you heard of baked Alaska? If you haven’t—it’s sponge cake with layers of ice cream covered in meringue, which might even be torched right before your eyes. Yes, it’s amazing, and yes, it’s very cool, but it’s a bit too vintage and it needs an update.
An upscale Chinese restaurant on Manhattan’s Upper East Side named Philippe Chow realized this and did something about it—and that something includes setting cotton candy on fire.
They completely reinvented the dish in a very modern way that includes cotton candy, rum and even fire! Much like the very mesmerizing melting chocolate balls that have ice cream inside, the outer layer of this dessert melts away and makes the rest of the dessert even better.
What Traditional Baked Alaska Looks Like
The start of this treat is very similar to traditional baked Alaska. It starts with ice cream cake (because who doesn’t love both ice cream and cake). In traditional baked Alaska, the next step would be to cover the cake in a huge mound of meringue (yum, right) but nope. In addition to meringue this dessert is covered in a huge pile of cotton candy and it’s beautiful.
The Updated Version, Cotton Candy and All
When the dessert arrives at your table, the pile of cotton candy is completely doused in rum (who doesn’t love alcohol on their desserts). After, the cotton candy is set on fire. As you watch the rum soaked pile of sugar melt, it burns and adds another layer to the cake, a crunchy layer of sugar.It's beyond mesmerizing to watch and equally as beautiful to look at. If you want to watch this for yourself (and eat it, of course) head over to Philippe Chow on 33 E. 60th to get your hands and eyes on your very own cotton candy baked Alaska.