(Physics for ages 5+)
Ice cream is probably the best desert out there, but if it’s a hot summer day and you eat it too slowly, you’re likely to have a melty mess on your hands. It doesn’t even have to be that hot and ice cream can melt all over the place, so how can it possible be baked in the hot temperatures of an oven without melting?
In the video above, you can see how to bake your ice cream without it all melting. Here’s what you’ll need:
3 eggs (at room temperature)
Cream of tartar
Whisk or electric mixer
Biscuits or cookies of your choice
Adult supervision (Adult supervision at all times)
- Preheat your oven to 230 F or 110 C.
- Start by separating your three eggs and adding the whites to your bowl. Next, add ¼ teaspoon of the cream of tartar, ¼ teaspoon of the salt, and ½ teaspoon of vanilla to your egg whites. Use the whisk or your electric mixer to mix this all together until it can stand up on its own (a fluffy, foamy texture). This may take a while, but don’t give up.
- After your meringue has taken shape it is time to add 1 cup of superfine sugar in increments of 1 tablespoon. Stir the tablespoon sugar into the meringue, and then add the next bit. Do this until you have added a full cup.
- Line your baking tray with a sheet of parchment paper and then set a few biscuits or cookies on the tray. Use whatever you have on hand, but graham crackers, saltines, sugar cookies or sponge cake are just a few options that work well.
- Next, add a small scoop of ice cream to each biscuit. Be sure the ice cream does not touch the edges of the biscuit, and coat each bit of ice cream with the meringue foam. The meringue has to completely cover the ice cream so use the spoon to shape it as needed.
- Once all of the ice cream biscuits have been coated in meringue, they are ready to be baked. Place the tray on the bottom rack of the oven and set the timer for 1 hour. Be sure to check every ten minutes that the meringue is not burning or browning too quickly.
- After the hour is up, pull the baking tray out of the oven and check out your results. Do you see any puddles of melted ice cream? What happened to the meringue coating? Cut into one of the meringue toppers to see how your ice cream fared. Did it melt all the way or is it still a little frozen?
The meringue and biscuits are both full of small air bubbles that offer a great layer of insulation. Because of this insulation, heat is not able to flow through the biscuits and the meringue to the ice cream in the middle, so even though the ice cream is in a very warm environment, it stays cold and protected inside it’s meringue coat.