I had called Hubby at work to ask what kind of ice cream he wanted me to make for Mother’s Day dessert. Naturally, this was a very important topic and he needed to be contacted at his desk immediately.
Me: “I’m going to use a vanilla base so would you like Oreos, chocolate chip cookies, Butterfingers, MnMs, nuts, a mixture of candy…?”
Him: “You know me. Anything rich. How about chocolate ganache and those crunchies you get from an ice cream cake?”
Me: I don’t remember naming either of those two options. “How do Oreos sound for cookies and cream like I usually make?”
Him: “I’m sure that will be delicious, but then why did you ask me what I wanted?”
So as I was contemplating how to make my ganache and get it to a proper consistency that would freeze correctly…and either pick up crunchies from an ice cream shop or somehow create my own (would I crush up my previously suggested Oreos without the cream?), I came up with another idea.
It would be indulgent, just as he requested, and something different from what I’ve made in the past.
Do you remember my watch-out-I-need-chocolate-now decadent brownie bars? The ones I created out of pure demand by my mouthful of sweet teeth waiting to be satisfied? We’re talking fudgy brownies, sweetened condensed milk, crunchy hazelnuts, chocolate chips and a sprinkle of sea salt over top? Well, I made them, froze them, chopped them up, and put THAT into my ice cream mixture. Pretty awesome, right?
Hubby was happy. We were all very happy.
Ice cream is one of my most favorite things to serve when entertaining a crowd. It’s fairly simple, has to be made in advance, and is such an impressive treat to offer. Everybody loves ice cream and nothing beats that homemade taste. If you’re using the go-to vanilla base, you can do just about anything with it. In the past, I’ve incorporated homemade dulce de leche, scratch-made peanut butter sauce, fresh-baked cookies, fruit, you name it.
I know gadgets aren’t always necessary in the kitchen, but if you’re going to get something this summer, I highly recommend an ice cream maker. I use Cuisinart’s (not just because it’s red!) and it has delivered every time. While some flavors, like pistachio, require a little more prep work, the amazing frozen helper really does the job for you. Always smooth and creamy with no crystallization or ‘protective ice’.
It makes for a great party trick too! I’ve actually taken the machine out on a whim while visitors were over so they could see the magic in action. I remember one time when we were entertaining sleepover guests, I decided to make a batch of chocolate chip MnM cookies, threw them into the mix, froze it for a few hours and we all enjoyed it later that evening. No wonder why people keep coming over…
For ice cream:
1 cup whole milk
2 cups heavy cream
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 box fudge brownie mix (plus eggs, water & oil per instructions)
1 (14 oz.) can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 chopped hazelnuts
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
Prepare That’s SO Jenn’s decadent brownie bars according to recipe. Freeze in an airtight container.
Chop brownie into pieces and measure out about one cup’s worth.
Pour milk, heavy cream, sugar and vanilla into a mixing bowl. Stir until sugar dissolves.
Add mixture to frozen base of your ice cream maker.
Churn for about 20-25 minutes before adding brownie bits.
Mix for another five minutes.
Transfer ice cream to an airtight container. I always use those 32 oz. take-out soup containers, plus another small one.
Freeze for two hours or overnight until ready to serve.
Eat and enjoy with family!