Monday, July 18, 2011

Smore's Ice Cream Bars

I feel like it's been a while since I posted something. Not because I haven't made anything, although I have been cutting back, but because I've had my hands full. It's hard enough to find time to do everything I need/want to do with a newborn and toddler as it is, posting a recipe gets the back burner. So to make up for my lack of posts, here's a 2 in 1.
I love all things smores, so it was a given that I had to try making these. Especially since I like having a homemade treat in the freezer I can pull out and eat as I wish. Which i'm learning can be a very bad thing.. These ice cream sandwiches reminded me of an It's-It (the kind with oatmeal cookie and vanilla ice cream) if you've ever tried those.
The homemade graham crackers were real good, although mine turned out more like cookies. But that's ok..I like cookies :) Definitely something i'll make again. Except for I needed to bake them a little longer because they were a little doughey tasting. Once they were frozen though it was alright.
The roasted marshmallow ice cream was good too, but not really something I would eat by itself. But make it into a sundae or something and i'm sure i'd be all over it. I should also note that instead of making the meringue for the ice cream, I just used store bought marshmallows and roasted them on a baking sheet then blended it up with the custard.

Smore's Ice Cream Sandwiches
Pennies on a Platter

Graham Crackers:
Yield: 48 2-inch squares
2 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup dark brown sugar, lightly packed
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon kosher or coarse sea salt
7 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed and frozen
1/3 cup honey
5 tablespoons milk, full-fat preferred
2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Combine the flour, brown sugar, baking soda and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Pulse to incorporate. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture is the consistency of coarse meal.
Whisk together the honey, milk and vanilla in a small bowl. Pour into the flour mixture and pulse again a few times until the dough barely comes together. It will be soft and somewhat sticky. Lightly dust a large piece of plastic wrap with flour, then turn the dough out onto it and pat into a rectangle about 1-inch thick. Wrap it and chill until firm, about 2 hours or overnight. Meanwhile, prepare the topping by mixing together the 3 tablespoons sugar and ground cinnamon in a small bowl or shaker; set aside.
Once the dough is firm, remove from plastic wrap and roll out on a lightly floured surface to about 1/4-inch thick rectangle. Flour the rolling pin as necessary. Cut into 2-inch squares and place on lined baking sheets. Sprinkle with the cinnamon sugar topping then chill until firm, about 30 to 45 minutes in the fridge or 15 to 20 minutes in the freezer.
Adjust the oven rack to the upper and lower positions and preheat the oven to 350˚F.
Using a fork, prick the dough to form three dotted rows. Bake the crackers/cookies for 15 to 25 minutes, until browned and slightly firm to the touch, rotating sheets halfway through to ensure even baking. Bake for a shorter time if desiring more of a cookie texture. Sprinkle with more cinnamon sugar after baking, if desired.

Roasted Marshmallow Ice Cream
4 eggs, divided
About 1 cup sugar, divided
1/4 cup water
2 cups milk
1 cup whipping cream
Pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the marshmallow meringue:
Combine 2/3 cup of the sugar and 1/4 cup water in a small saucepan. Stir until the sugar dissolves, with the heat on low, until it reaches between 236˚-244˚F. Try not to let it boil. In the meantime, you can start following the instructions below to make the custard.
Once the syrup reaches 230˚F, start whipping the egg whites until reaches soft peaks. Add the cream of tartar and continue to beat until reaches stiff peaks. With the mixer still on, pour the hot sugar syrup into the egg whites in a thin stream. Beat until somewhat cooled, then spread onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Broil for a few minutes, until nicely browned.

For the custard:
In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and 3 tablespoons of the sugar until the mixture is pale yellow; set aside. While keeping an eye on the sugar syrup, warm the milk, cream and salt in a medium heavy saucepan until almost boiling. Temper the eggs by slowly whisking 1/2 cup of the warmed cream into the egg yolks, while stirring constantly to avoid curdling. Slowly whisk in the rest of the cream into the egg yolks, then pour back into the saucepan and continue to heat on medium-low until the custard thickens (about 3-6 minutes). Place a lid on the saucepan to keep the custard warm until the marshmallow meringue is ready.
Once the marshmallow meringue is ready, transfer the custard into a large bowl and whisk in the roasted marshmallow meringue. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Just before freezing, whisk the mixture again and stir in the vanilla. Freeze according to your ice cream freezer manufacturer’s instructions.

Assemble the Sandwiches:
you'll need:
homemade graham crackers
roasted marshmallow ice cream

When making the ice cream, after churning in your freezer bowl, spread the ice cream in a 9×13 parchment-lined pan. Freeze overnight.
The next day, match your graham crackers into pairs by size. Make the ganache and spread a thin layer on one cookie from each pair. Set on a baking sheet and freeze for 20 minutes to partially harden the chocolate. (This will create a sturdier base for holding the ice cream.)
Remove the ice cream from the pan by lifting the parchment paper and set on a cutting board. Using a knife, cut the ice cream into squares or rectangles equal to the size of your graham crackers, one portion for each pair of grahams. Place the ice cream square on the ganache and sandwich the other graham cracker on top, gently pressing together. Return back to the baking sheet and freeze until hard. Wrap individually in foil and keep stored in the freezer.
Makes about 8-10 sandwiches Follow TawnyAlexander on Twitter

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Brownie Ice Cream Cake

My husband offered to make my birthday cake for me this year, it was a nice offer but it's something I prefer to do myself. This is a super simple recipe and one of the things I like most about it is you store it in the freezer and you can cut off a slice to eat whenever you want some. Normally I don't make cakes for the reason that there's only 2 of us and I don't want half of it to go to waste. Not a problem with this cake though. Matt didn't care too much for the marshmallows on top but that was my favorite part!! The brownie gets a little hard from being frozen, but that's expected and it still tasted great. I had a hard time picking what ice cream to use but decided to keep it simple and go with chocolate chip. I'm already thinking of different ice cream combinations to use because there will be a next time! Oh, and don't forget the hot fudge!

Brownie Ice Cream Cake
recipe girl

*updated 7/7/12: I made this cake for my birthday again this year, this time using chocolate peanut butter cup ice cream. Definitely was better with something simple like chocolate chip! I really need to get some butane for my kitchen torch..the broiler always works faster than expected!

4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 ounce unsweetened chocolate
4 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. baking powder
2 large eggs
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. instant espresso powder (optional)
1/8 tsp. salt

1 1/2 qts. ice cream, any flavor (I used chocolate chip)

1 cup marshmallow cream
1 Tbsp. water
4 – 5 cups mini marshmallows

hot fudge

1. Prepare brownie layer- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan. In a microwave-safe bowl, heat chocolates and butter together in small bursts, just until melted. Stir until smooth. Sift together flour & baking powder. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs and sugar. Whisk in chocolate mixture. Add the dry ingredients, espresso powder and salt. Stir until combined. Spread brownie batter in the prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 15 minutes. Cool completely before continuing with the recipe.
2. Take ice cream out of the freezer and soften for a bit, just until it’s easy enough to mash around and spread. Spread the ice cream over the brownie layer.
3. In a medium bowl, whisk together marshmallow cream and water. Stir in 3 cups of marshmallows. Spread the marshmallow mixture over the ice cream. Sprinkle 2 remaining cups of marshmallows on top. Freeze until the ice cream is hard, at least 6 hours- but best overnight.
4. Toasting the marshmallows- If you have a handheld blowtorch, run a knife around the inside edge of the springform pan. Release the latch and remove the ring. Use a very sharp, wide, thin knife to run under the brownie layer to release it from the pan and transfer it to a serving platter. Torch the marshmallows until they’re golden brown. If using the broiler, adjust the rack so the ice cream cake will be 2 – 3 inches from the heating element. Preheat the broiler. Leave the cake in the pan, put it on a baking pan, and place it under the heating element. Broil until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Run a knife around the inside edge of the pan and remove the pan.
5. Serve immediately with a good amount of hot fudge. Freeze leftovers and eat as you wish, for up to one week.
Serves: 10
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