Peggy’s Baked Autumn Alaska – Pumpkin Pie

November 2, 2008.   8 Comments.   Categories Christmas, Desserts, Peggy's Favorites, Pies and Tarts, Thanksgiving Dinner.  

My mother used to make a Thanksgiving dessert that she called Autumn Alaska.  It was originally inspired by the traditional Baked Alaska dessert – but used a full size pumpkin pie as the base, then a layer of ice cream topped by meringue.  It was both beautiful and delicious. In the 1970’s, her recipe was published in a cookbook in the San Francisco area.

Unfortunately, she no longer has her exact recipe, but she was able to put this together based upon her memory and what she found on-line.  It’s more of a concept than an exact recipe. You may use your own favorite pumpkin pie recipe or crust.  The pumpkin pie recipes calling for molasses got the best reviews for us.  It would be best if you could practice making this before attempting the recipe for a special event. On Thanksgiving, plan to assemble w/ice cream and bake just before serving after dinner.

Once perfected… the end result is a beautiful meringue pie with ice cream and pumpkin pie on the inside.  It’s a unique twist to simple pumpkin pie.

Recipe is ready in 2-5 hours.  There is a degree of difficulty.

Serves/Makes:  12

Pumpkin Pie (or use your favorite recipe)


  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/8 cup (or less if you prefer) tablespoons molasses (makes flavor more rich)
  • 3 egg yolks — slightly beaten
  • 1 can (16 ounce size) pumpkin
  • 1 can (13 ounce size) evaporated milk
  • 1 pint high quality Vanilla or French Vanilla ice cream

Single-Crust Pastry

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup shortening,
  • 1 tablespoon shortening (separate use from the 1/3 cup listed above)
  • 2 tablespoons cold water

Brown Sugar Meringue

  • 5 egg whites (room temperature)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 10 tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt


Heat oven to 425 degrees F. Prepare pastry.

Mix remaining pie ingredients except ice cream and meringue. Pour into pastry-lined 10″ pie plate. Bake 15 minutes.

Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Bake until knife inserted in center comes out clean, about 45 minutes longer. Refrigerate baked pie at least 1 hour.

Soften ice cream slightly; press ice cream into waxed paper-lined pie plate, 8 ×1 1/2 inches (make sure it’s about an inch smaller than your pie pan) Freeze until very cold and solid. It’s very important that the ice cream pie plate by smaller than the pumpkin pie dish.

Just before serving, heat oven to 500 degrees F. Prepare Brown Sugar Meringue. Unmold ice cream and invert (upside down) on pie; remove waxed paper.

Spoon meringue onto pie, covering ice cream completely and sealing meringue to edge of crust. Bake until golden brown (watch very closely), 2 to 3 minutes.

Serve immediately.  Because this has ice cream, it will not keep – plan to eat it all!

Additional Instructions:

BROWN SUGAR MERINGUE: Beat egg whites and cream of tartar until foamy.

Beat in brown sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time; continue beating until stiff and glossy. Do not underbeat. Beat in vanilla.

PASTRY: Mix flour and salt. Cut in lard until particles are size of small peas. Sprinkle with water, 1 tablespoon at a time, tossing with fork until all flour is moistened and pastry almost cleans side of bowl (1 to 2 teaspoons water can be added if necessary).

Gather pastry into ball; shape into flattened round on lightly floured cloth-covered surface. Roll pastry 2 inches larger than inverted pie plate with floured cloth-covered rolling pin. Fold pastry into fourths; unfold and ease into plate, pressing firmly against bottom and side.

Trim overhanging edge of pastry 1 inch from rim of plate. Fold and roll pastry under, even with plate. Flatten pastry evenly on rim of pie plate. Press firmly around edge with tines of fork, dipping fork into flour occasionally to prevent sticking. Or build up edge of pastry.

Place index finger on inside of pastry edge and knuckles (or thumb and index finger) on outside. Pinch pastry into V shape; pinch again to sharpen. Fill and bake as directed in recipe.

For Baked Pie Shell: Heat oven to 475 degrees F. Prick bottom and side thoroughly with fork. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until light brown; cool.


  1. Hi Karen! You busted me! 🙂 I didn’t have a photo so I had to use a stock image…. plan on making it this year so I’ll update the picture! This is one of the first recipes I posted when I started this blog… it really needs to be updated. Thanks to your comment, it’s now on my “to do” list! 🙂

  2. Wow, this looks so fun & so amazing. I can’t wait to give it a try. Looks like you piped the outer layer of meringue? What is on the very top? It looks like a snowball 😉

  3. Hi, No… this is my first blog and I’m not a writer.. so I doubt we’ve crossed editorial paths! Now, the bigger question is what is the writer of “How to Get Six Pack Fast” doing reading the pumpkin pie post! 🙂

  4. The style of writing is very familiar to me. Have you written guest posts for other blogs?

  5. This sounds fantastic. As I’m not in charge of Thanksgiving, this will be a serious contender for Christmas dessert! Thanks for sharing.

  6. Yumm yum!!!

  7. This looks fantastic! I love baked Alaska and pumpkin pie, what a glorious move to combine them.

  8. That’s stunning and creative! I love it.

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