YUMMY NEW SWEEPSTAKES! WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE ICE CREAM SANDWICH COMBINATION?September 11, 2009
Who would not agree that an ice cream sandwich is one of the best ways to eat ice cream? Eating ice cream by itself is pretty darn perfect but eating it with your fingers has to be close to heaven.
When most people think about ice cream sandwiches the first thing that comes to mind is vanilla ice cream bookended by soft chocolate wafers. But we shouldn’t stop there. In my book A Passion for Ice Cream, I have a whole chapter devoted to ice cream sandwiches called With your Fingers. Chocolate cookies with mint chocolate chip ice cream, cocoa nib florentines with orange ice cream, ginger snaps with lemon ice cream, ranger cookies with peanut butter ice cream.
On the Waterbar dessert menu we have our version of an It’s It. (If you are not familiar with the It’s It, a mostly west coast treat, check out their website.) Our rendition is malted milk ball ice cream sandwiched between two crisp oatmeal cookies. It is then half dipped in bittersweet chocolate. It’s a big seller on our bar menu.
Ice cream sandwiches are easy to make. Yes, you can make your own cookies and/or your own ice cream but if you are short on time or inclination don’t despair. Get your favorite bakery cookies and your favorite commercial ice cream and go for it.
Slightly soften the ice cream (or even sorbet) when you assemble them so the cookies won’t break when you press the sandwich together. Store them in a single layer on a baking sheet in the freezer. Freeze until solid. Wrap them individually in plastic wrap to keep the flavors fresh. (If they last that long.)
Ice cream sandwiches can also be turned into a “dinner party” dessert. Serve them individually on a plate with a dish of warm caramel or chocolate sauce for dipping. YUM!
THE CONTEST: In honor of ice cream sandwiches and how much joy they bring to the world, I am going to have a contest. Send me your favorite ice cream sandwich combination (the cookie and the ice cream). Whoever comes up with the best idea will win signed copies of my three best selling cookbooks, A Passion for Desserts, A Passion for Ice Cream and Classic Stars Desserts (Valued at over $100!).
If you want it to be a homemade creation great but it doesn’t have to be. Store bought cookies and ice cream are fine. It’s all about the combinations. Get creative and just have fun. Send in your entries on the comment board here by October 30th.
To get your creative juices flowing, here’s my recipe for Raspberry Ice Cream Sandwiches. These don’t even use a cookie but crispy filo.
Raspberry Ice Cream Sandwiches
Makes 8 sandwiches
Raspberry Ice Cream
12 ounces frozen raspberries (no sugar added), defrosted
4 large egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups milk
1 1/4 cups heavy (whipping) cream
2 ounces (1/2 cup) whole natural almonds, toasted
1/4 cup sugar
2 ounces (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
4 sheets filo
To make the ice cream: Puree the raspberries in a food processor or through a food mill. Strain the puree through a sieve to eliminate any seeds.
In a large bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, 1/4 cup of the sugar, and the salt.
Warm the milk, the cream, and the remaining 1/4 cup sugar in a saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until hot and bubbling around the edges, about 5 minutes. Slowly whisk the liquid into the egg mixture. Return the milk and cream to the pan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden or rubber heat-resistant spatula, until it coats the back of a spoon, about 5 minutes. Strain through a medium-mesh sieve.
Stir in the raspberry puree. Cool over an ice bath, then refrigerate until cold.
Freeze in an ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions. While the ice cream is freezing, grease a 9-by-13-inch pan. Line the bottom and sides of the pan with a piece of plastic wrap. Spread the freshly churned ice cream into the pan and freeze until solid, 6 hours to overnight.
Place a piece of parchment paper on top of the pan. Place a cutting board on top of the parchment paper. Invert the pan and cutting board together. Remove the pan and then gently remove the plastic wrap. Cut the ice cream into rectangles 4 by 2 1/2 inches. (Save scraps for nibbling.) Place the ice cream rectangles on a baking sheet in a single layer (or stack with plastic wrap between layers). Freeze until you are ready to serve the sandwiches.
Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
To make the filo rectangles: Finely grind the almonds and the sugar together in a food processor. Put in a small bowl.
Lay the sheets of filo on a flat work surface. Remove 1 sheet from the stack and place it on the work surface in front of you. Cover the remaining sheets with a kitchen towel. Brush the single sheet with some of the melted butter and then sprinkle with one quarter of the almond sugar. Lay a second sheet of filo on top of the first and again butter and sugar it. Continue in the same manner with the remaining 2 sheets of filo.
Cut the filo stack into 16 rectangles, each 4 by 2 1/2 inches. Using a metal spatula, transfer the rectangles to the prepared baking sheets, placing them about 1/4 inch apart.
Bake the filo rectangles until golden brown, about 10 minutes. Let cool to room temperature.
To serve: Place a rectangle of raspberry ice cream between 2 pieces of filo and serve immediately.