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Pancake Alaska

ingredients

serves 4
100 g (4 oz) plain flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 egg yolks
1 tablespoon caster sugar
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
175 ml (6 fl oz) milk
extra vegetable oil, for frying

filling

225 g (8 oz) apricot jam
1 tablespoon brandy or orangeflavoured liqueur
425 g (15 oz) can pineapple pieces, drained

meringue

2 egg whites
100 g (4 oz) caster sugar
1 tablespoon flaked almonds

method

1. Heat the oven to 220C/425F/Gas 7.

2. Sift the flour, baking powder and
salt into a bowl. Add the egg yolks, sugar, oil and milk and whisk until just smoothly blended.

3. Brush a 15 cm/6 inch heavy-based frying-pan lightly with oil; place over moderately high heat. Remove from the heat and pour in about 2 tablespoons batter. Using the back of the spoon, spread the batter to the sides of the pan.

4. Return to the heat and cook until the bubbles burst on top. Loosen with a palette knife, then turn the pancake over and cook on the other side for a further 20-30 seconds, until browned. Lift on to greaseproof paper and keep warm.

5. Continue making pancakes, interleaving them with greaseproof paper, until you have about 7. Stir the batter frequently and grease the pan with more oil as necessary.

6. Warm the jam with the brandy in a small pan. Reserve 1 pancake; spread the rest with warmed jam.

7. Place 1 pancake, jam side up, on an ovenproof serving plate and top with a few pineapple pieces. Cover with another pancake, jam side up. Continue layering in this way,
ending with the reserved plain pancake on top.

8. Make the meringue: in a clean, dry bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff, then whisk in the sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time.

9. Swirl the meringue over the top and sides of pancake stack, taking it right down on to the plate. Sprinkle with the almonds. Bake immediately in the oven for 10 minutes, or until the meringue is tinged with brown and the nuts are golden. Serve at once, cut into wedges.

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