A recipe is merely words on paper; a guideline, a starting point from which to improvise. It cannot pretend to replace the practiced hand and telling glance of a watchful cook. For that reason feel free to stir your own ideas into this dish. When you cook it once, it becomes yours, so personalize it a bit. Add more of an ingredient you like or less of something you don't like. Try substituting one ingredient for another. Remember words have no flavour, you have to add your own!
1 pre-baked sheet cake, any flavour, homemade or store bought
cup Grand Marnier or your favourite liqueur
L premium vanilla ice cream or your favourite flavour
egg whites, reserve half of one egg shell
Tbsp cream of tartar
cup white sugar
tsp vanilla extract
1. Cut the sheetcake into an 8" circle and center on a baking sheet. Sprinkle the cake with Grand Marnier (3 tablespoons) soaking it well!
2. Mound scoops of ice cream onto the cake creating a dome shape. Try to leave a 1" border around the edge of the cake. Freeze until solid, several hours or overnight.
3. Preheat your oven thoroughly to 450 degrees.
4. In a stand mixer, whip the egg whites and cream of tartar until they form soft peaks. Stir in the vanilla. Slowly begin adding the sugar continuing until stiff peaks form. Spread over the ice cream hiding the frozen cake. If you like, swirl decoratively with the back of a spoon or place some in a pastry bag and pipe on a decorative edge. Gently press an eggshell half into the top of the works. Immediately place in the hot oven and briefly bake until the meringue begins to turn a light brown colour, about 5 to 8 minutes.
5. Sit all your guests back down! Gently warm the remaining Grand Marnier in a small pot just until small bubbles begin to appear. Pour some into the eggshell, dim the lights and ignite. At the table you may pour some more liqueur from a ladle into the eggshell and it too will ignite.