Lemon Meringue Ice-Cream Cake

This is for the ice-cream lovers! Sweet and zesty at the same time, this is a delicious dessert that always hits the spot. It requires a little extra time because there are three layers to make and you need to allow enough time for it to chill before you serve it.

Here’s what goes in:

For the base:

  • 1 packet of Tennis biscuits, crushed (200g)
  • 125g of butter, melted

For the filling:

  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 tins of condensed milk (385g each)
  • half a cup of lemon juice
  • lemon rind of 1 lemon, finely grated
  • 1 cup of fresh cream (or 250ml tub)

For the meringue:

  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 cup of castor sugar
  • 1 teaspoons of white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence 1 teaspoon of corn flour

How to do it:

To make the base: The easiest way to crush the biscuits is to empty them into a zip seal bag and gently crush them with a rolling pin or another suitably heavy object. Combine the biscuits with the melted butter in a mixing bowl. Press this mixture firmly into a greased and lined springform cake tin, with a diameter of approximately 22cm. Use the back of a metal spoon to smooth it down and then pop it into the fridge to harden.

In the meantime, prepare the filling. Separate the eggs and mix the yolks with the condensed milk. Then add the lemon juice, stirring well to combine. Once the mixture has thickened, grate in the lemon rind. Finally stir in the cup of cream. It’s very important that you don’t stir in the cream until the lemon is well combined so that the cream does not curdle. Now pour this mixture into an ice-cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions. If your ice-cream maker does what mine does, your ice-cream will still be quite soft.  Scrape this out onto the base of your cake and place it in the freezer to harden. This will need another couple of hours to freeze properly.

While this is freezing, you can start your meringue. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C and grease and line a flat baking tray. Using a clean, dry bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form, and then gradually add the caster sugar, one large spoonful at a time, while you keep the mixer going. I love using my electric cake mixer for this because it means that I can be hands-free while the machine does the work for me. Once all the sugar is in, your meringue should be stiff and shiny.

Using a baking spatula, gently fold in the baking powder, cornflour, and vinegar. Add the vanilla essence last, scraping the bottom and sides of the bowl until everything is thoroughly mixed in. Spoon this out onto your baking sheet, making a circular formation slightly smaller than the size of your cake tin diameter. This will give your meringue room to grow to the same size as your ice-cream cake.

Pop your meringue into the oven, and immediately turn the temperature down to 150°C. The baking time should be about an hour. To check if it’s ready, open the oven door and gently tap the meringue. It should be firm and dry to the touch. Don’t overcook it because you want it to have a soft, marshmallow-like texture in the middle. When it’s ready, turn off the oven and open the door slightly to let the meringue completely cool.

Just before serving, take the ice-cream cake out of the freezer and remove it from the springform tin. Place the ice-cream cake on a flat serving plate. Gingerly peel the paper from underneath the meringue and place it on top of your ice-cream cake. If your meringue isn’t the perfect fit, you can smash up the meringue a bit and get creative with assembling your cake.

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