Tag Archives: vanilla ice cream

Eskimo Bars

12 Jul

I had my doubts about these. Homemade magic shell layer? How well can that turn out…really? Turns out, pretty darn great! I opted to go for the no-dip version, because dipping them was a little tricky and a lota messy (I lack a certain coordination apparently – that and my chocolate must have been a little on the warm side because it was melting my ice cream right off the brownie).  So, I drizzled instead. I poured a layer of caramel sauce (I used a jar of caramel ice cream topping) between the brownie and the ice cream layer instead of dipping it as well. This was both good and bad. I liked having everything together without having to worry about double dipping every time I wanted my caramel fix. However, it made the ice cream a little slippery and my layers didn’t want to stay stuck together. I plan on remedying this eventually (I’ll keep you posted if it works…or you try it and let me know ;)). I’m guessing that if I use my thicker homemade caramel instead of the store bought kind, then I think it will serve as a more effective glue between the ice cream and brownies.  Darn. I hate having to remake recipes over and over again until I get them right. Especially when they involve brownies and ice cream and caramel. It’s just torture. But, someone has to do it…and eat it…every time. Darn. 🙂

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INGREDIENTS

 

Brownie Layer:
    • 10 tablespoons butter
    • 1 1/4 cups sugar
    • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (natural or Dutch-process)
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
    • 2 large eggs
    • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
Ice Cream Layer:
    • 1 quart good-quality vanilla ice cream (storebought or homemade)
Magic Shell Layer:
    • 3/4 cup coconut oil
    • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
Caramel Sauce:
  • 1-2 cups good-quality storebought or homemade caramel sauce

 

DIRECTIONS

 

  1. For the brownies, position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 325°F. Line the bottom and sides of an 8×8-inch square baking pan with aluminum foil, leaving an overhang on two opposite sides. Lightly grease with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Combine the butter, sugar, cocoa, and salt in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for one minute intervals, stirring in between, until the butter is melted and the mixture is smooth. Set the mixture aside until it cools slightly (is warm to the touch not hot). It will look gritty but it will become smooth once the other ingredients are added. Stir in the vanilla with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula. Add the eggs one at a time, stirring vigorously after each one. When the batter looks thick, shiny, and well blended, add the flour and stir until you cannot see it any longer, then beat vigorously for 40 strokes with the wooden spoon or a rubber spatula. Spread evenly in the lined pan.
  3. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center emerges slightly moist with batter, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool completely on a rack and then chill in the refrigerator or freezer until thoroughly cold – this will help the brownies hold up well to the ice cream layer that’s coming.
  4. For the ice cream layer, soften the ice cream to spreading consistency (leaving at room temperature for 15-20 minutes should do the trick), then spread an even layer across the chilled brownies. The ice cream layer should be about an inch thick. Put the pan in the freezer until very firm (1-2 hours).
  5. For the magic shell, in a microwave-safe bowl, combine the coconut oil and chocolate chips. It helps if the bowl is more tall than wide so that when you dip the bars, the chocolate mixture is deep and not super shallow. Microwave for one minute intervals at 50% power until the chocolate is melted. Stir the mixture until it is smooth. It will be fairly runny.
  6. Remove the pan of brownies from the freezer. Gently lift the foil handles and remove the ice cream layered brownies from the pan. Cut the browines in half. Then, working with one half at a time (you might want to return the other half to the freezer if your kitchen is overly warm), cut rectangle into long, thin bars, about 1-inch by 4-inches. You should end up with 8 or so bars per half. Repeat with the remaining half. It is best to put all the cut bars onto a tray or plate and keep them in the refrigerator while dipping so they stay as cold as possible.
  7. Place a baking rack over a sheet of parchment paper or waxed paper or even aluminum foil (to help with cleanup). Working one-by-one, gently hold the ice cream bar at the base of the brownie and dip it quickly into the chocolate shell mixture (tilt the bowl to help deepen the chocolate for easier dipping) until completely coated and place on the baking rack. Your hands will get messy but I promise it’s worth it! Repeat the dipping process with each bar. After I dipped about 5-7 bars and the chocolate shell had hardened (it sets up very quickly, especially if your ice cream and brownie is very cold), I gently removed them from the cooling rack and put them in the freezer so the ice cream didn’t melt and kept dipping the other bars that were waiting in the freezer.
  8. Make note that the chocolate shell mixture will want to stick to the baking rack so pry the eskimo bars carefully off the baking rack so the chocolate shell doesn’t crack as you separate them from where the chocolate has hardened to the rack.
  9. When ready to serve, remove the eskimo bars from the freezer and let them sit at room temperature for 5-7 minutes. Warm the caramel sauce until it is runny and slightly warm but not overly hot (you don’t want any burned fingers).
  10. Dip the eskimo bars in the caramel and enjoy!

 

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Original recipe: http://www.melskitchencafe.com/outrageous-eskimo-bars/

 

 

 

 

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No-Cook Vanilla Ice Cream

6 Oct

My husband is an ice cream snob. He prefers plain-Jane vanilla ice cream, and he prefers home-made. I don’t really blame him – home-made is oh, so much better. But I heartily believe that he misses out on a lot of hip-widening goodness (if you’re going to gain 10 lbs, you might as well do it eating as many different flavors as you can find), by limiting himself to one flavor. That being said, nothing beats a really good vanilla for a jumping off point – think of the toppings! I have a recipe that I always use, but it calls for eggs and there is no cooking involved. I’m a cookie dough eater, so I’m not afraid of raw eggs (I have yet to suffer from salmonella poisoning that my mom always threatened would most certainly occur – maybe I’ve built up an immunity…yet another reason one should eat cookie dough), but the texture has not always been quite right for me. It is great straight out of the ice cream maker, but, though I love ice cream, I have yet to manage to polish off an entire batch in one sitting. This means re-freezing, and it always ends up hard as a rock! I tried cooking it – texture was fab. Taste was pretty darn terrible. Ever had egg flavored ice cream? Well now I have, and I don’t recommend it. So, the search was on! I found one I liked and tweaked it a little (when I say ‘a little,’ I mean I made about 5 different batches of ice cream, 3 of which are sitting in my freezer and are so bad that I think they may set up a permanent residence there – so properly appreciate this recipe – I don’t usually put forth so much effort to get it right ;)). Here’s my winner: same great taste, much better behavior in the freezer – the only downside that I found was that it doesn’t hold up straight out of the ice cream maker; you will have to give it time to set in the freezer before serving. I figure it’s an even trade.

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Ingredients:

3 cups half and half

*for creamier texture, substitue 1 cup milk and 2 cups heavy whipping cream

3/4 cup sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

pinch of salt

In a large bowl, combine ingredients and mix well until sugar is completely dissolved. Place in ice cream maker and churn according to directions. Allow to set in freezer for at least 2-3 hours before serving.