I’m pretty proud of myself. So far, I’ve stuck to my plan of making a new ice cream every month this year. Yes, I realize it’s only February. Yes, I know that means that I’ve only made two different ice creams. You’re bringing me down.
Really, though…with all of the amazing foods out there to make, I’m pretty happy that I still took the time to make another ice cream. It’s really easy to skip ice cream for something a little more obvious! I mean, really, ice cream is sort of out-of-sight-out-of-mind, you know? Of course, once I make homemade ice cream, it’s all I can think of…
This month I tried my hand at ice cream sandwiches. I’ve never made them before, but I’ve always loved them. Let me tell you, I’ll never buy pre-made ice cream sandwiches again. If you’ve never known the joy of a homemade ice cream sandwich, then you’re in for a huge treat. These are so much more than those super sweet, spongy messes you buy at the grocery store! These cookies stand up to the ice cream. They don’t melt and get gross, coating your fingers with a layer of sticky, caky, bland chocolate. Instead they are as much of a part to enjoy as the ice cream. They stand on their own feet, but compliment the ice cream perfectly. In case you can’t tell, I love them. Deeply.You can use any ice cream you like for these, but I chose to do a beautiful white chocolate ice cream (recipe below). As for the cookies, I scoured my cookbooks, and the internet, before settling on my own version. Most of the recipes I found had extra steps that I felt could be eliminated by changing the ingredients slightly. I tried making the cookies my way, and I loved the results! Plus, they were easy, which is what I was going for!
Once you have your cookie batter (recipe below) mixed up, line a 16 1/2- by 11 1/2-inch rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat mat.
Place all of the batter on the prepared baking sheet. Using a rubber spatula, evenly spread the mixture until it completely covers the sheet.
Lightly spray a piece of plastic wrap with non-stick cooking spray. Lay the plastic wrap over the top of the cookie sheet and gently smooth out any large bumps in the batter. Discard the plastic wrap.
Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes, until cookies are dry to touch.
There are several ways to cut the cookies for sandwiches. The easiest way is to cut the cooled cookie in half. Fill one half with your preferred ice cream (slightly softened) and lay the other half on top. Wrap the entire sandwich in plastic wrap and freeze until firm. Once firm, remove from freezer, remove plastic wrap, and slice the large sandwich into several smaller square or rectangle sandwiches with a sharp knife.
You can also make smaller, individual sandwiches, but these are a little messier and more time consuming. However, by doing them this way, you can cut various shapes and sizes. Of all the shapes you can make, I prefer rounds, because they are a little easier to fill. I just use biscuit cutters to cut out as many sandwiches as possible in any size.
The only con about making shapes like rounds, is that you end up with unusable scraps. But don’t throw them away! I like to keep these and crumble them over a bowl of ice cream! They also work great as a crumb coat.
To fill the sandwiches, you’ll pretty much follow the same steps as you do for the large sandwich above. Fill each cookie with slightly softened ice cream, sandwich with another cookie, wrap in plastic wrap, and freeze. If desired, you can roll the edges of the sandwich in mini chocolate chips or sprinkles.
The square sandwiches don’t fill quite as well as the rounds, so when I do squares, I prefer to make them like directed above, as one large sandwich that’s cut later. That way you get ice cream right up to the edges!
My ice cream is all melty. I couldn’t wait to try them, so I took them out of the freezer too early. Don’t judge me…it’s ice cream. Sandwiches. See how long you can resist! Plus, it’s 90 degrees here on average, so…yeah, that’s why they’re all melty. Yeah.
Seriously, these were so wonderful! I haven’t tried them with another flavor of ice cream yet, but if I keep sticking to my plan to make a new ice cream every month, then I’m sure it won’t be long before I have a new, exciting ice cream sandwich to share! Whether you use these cookies for sandwiches or just to crumble over your ice cream, you won’t be disappointed. They’re rich, chocolaty, and the perfect soft, but firm texture to accompany ice cream. Being able to make them in less than 20 minutes doesn’t hurt either! Enjoy!
White Chocolate Ice Cream Sandwiches
Makes 2 quarts of ice cream & 24 cookies (12 sandwiches)
FOR THE ICE CREAM
7 ounces good quality white chocolate chips
3/4 cup milk
2/3 cup sugar
pinch of salt
5 egg yolks
2 cups heavy cream
FOR THE COOKIES
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
To make the ice cream: Place the chocolate chips in a large bowl, set a fine mesh strainer over it, and set aside.
Place the milk, sugar, and salt in a medium sauce pan set over medium heat. Slowly warming the mixture, while stirring occasionally.
Place the egg yolks in a medium bowl and whisk them until them are combined. In a slow, steady stream, pour the milk mixture over the eggs, whisking constantly. Pour the egg mixture back into the pan. Increase the heat to medium high and stir the mixture constantly with a heatproof rubber spatula. Cook until the mixture has thickened and coats the spatula. Pour through the mesh strainer over the chocolate. Stir until the chocolate has melted and the mixture is completely smooth. Stir in the heavy cream. If necessary, stir the mixture over an ice bath until cool. Mine is usually cool enough to skip this step. Cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.
Poor the mixture Â into your ice cream maker and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
To make the cookies: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 16 1/2- by 11 1/2-inch rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat mat.
In a large bowl, or the bowl of a standing mixer, combine the butter and sugar until smooth. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until combined.
In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, and salt. Sprinkle the flour mixture over the butter mixture and mix until thoroughly incorporated.
Place all of the batter on the prepared baking sheet. Using a rubber spatula, evenly spread the mixture until it completely covers the sheet and touches all of the sides and corners. Lightly spray a piece of plastic wrap with non-stick cooking spray. Lay the plastic wrap over the top of the cookie sheet and gently smooth out any large bumps in the batter. Discard the plastic wrap.
Bake for 10-12 minutes, until cookies are dry to touch. Allow to cool completely in the sheet pan before using.
Assemble sandwiches as directed above.
Ice cream recipe adapted from The Perfect Scoop, Cookies by Darla