This will make about 12 muffin top cakes (3.5 inch diameter)


  •  Cake (Cook’s Illustrated)

  • 2 ¼ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons natural cocoa powder (non alkaline)
  • 2 tablespoons red food coloring
  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar

    1/2 gallon strawberry ice cream

    1 recipe Italian Meringue


Preheat oven 350F. Prepare pans with grease & flour. Blend dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, salt). Whisk buttermilk together with vinegar, vanilla, and eggs in separate bowl. Beat butter and sugar together  with mixer until fluffy about 2 minutes. Add 1/3 flour and beat on medium low speed until just incorporated, 30 seconds. Add half buttermilk mixture and beat another 30 seconds. Add half the remaining flour, the remaining buttermilk and finally the rest of the flour.  Scrape down bowl and add cocoa mixture, beating on medium speed about 30 seconds. Put into prepared pans muffin top pans. Bake about 15-20 minutes for cup cakes; test with toothpick; it should come out clean. Cool 10 minutes before removing from pan.



  • 4 egg whites

  • 1 cup sugar
  • Pinch cream of tartar or teaspoon corn syrup
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla


Combine egg whites, sugar, cream of tartar or corn syrup in heatproof mixer bowl. Place bowl over pot of simmering water, and whisk until sugar is dissolved and whites are warmed to 145F, about 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and place bowl on electric mixer fitted with whisk attachment. Whip starting on low speed, increasing to high speed until stiff, glossy peaks form, about 10 minutes. Add vanilla, and use meringue immediately.

To assemble: Place cake rounds into freezer. Scoop 12 scoops ice cream smaller than chocolate cake diameter. Freeze solid. When meringue is ready, place ice cream on the cakes and cover with meringue. Torch as seen in class to brown, or use broiler placing cakes on low rack.

Serve immediately with stawberry sauce.


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