Salty Alaskas For the awards banquet at the tenth anniversary annual meeting, R. Russ Ruston, meeting and convention coordinator, American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians, Arlington Heights, Ill., wanted to do something special. He decided to order an individual baked Alaska for each table. The idea was grand--the flaming desserts would be brought out by wait staff with accompanying music.
Just before dinner, the catering manager asked Ruston if he wanted to the view the meal. Ruston looked at the meringue in the mixing bowl, and told the chef, "It's just gorgeous." The chef offered Ruston a taste.
Good thing he did. "It was salty as heck," Ruston says, laughing at the situation in retrospect. "He had used salt instead of sugar."
The kitchen crew went to work immediately. "They had to crack 700 egg whites in a very short period of time," Ruston says. "It's amazing they had that many eggs left."
It worked out fine in the end, Ruston says, and he learned a valuable lesson. "I pretty much taste everything [ahead of time] now," he says, adding, "And I don't do individual baked Alaskas."
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