Roasted Banana Ice Cream with Hard Chocolate Topping

Get ready for it.

We may be in the middle of February but I am giving you nothing but ice cream recipes this week. I already gave you an ice cream cake recipe on Monday. Friday will bring ice cream sandwich cookies. Today- ice cream AND my favorite topping.

Roasted Banana Ice Cream with Hard Chocolate Topping

I have become a bit ice cream obsessed as of late. I keep our ice cream churning base in our little chest freezer so I can make ice cream whenever I want. It is a bit of a problem if you ask me. Oh but homemade ice cream is so good! (Except the once it wasn’t. Speaking of which, I need to dig that stuff out of my freezer and pitch it)

Growing up one of my favorite treats was an ice cream cone from Dairy Queen dipped in chocolate. The chocolate would harden on the cold ice cream making the most delicious hard shell. God knows what was in the chocolate to make it do that. As an adult I have been known to make late night runs to the all too close Dairy Queen for a tiny dipped cone.

Roasted Banana Ice Cream with Hard Chocolate Topping

A few months ago I saw a recipe for “magic shell” topping and nearly fell out of my chair when I saw the ingredient list- chocolate and coconut oil. That’s it. I cannot tell you how many times I have made this recipe lately. In fact I am embarrased how often I make it. I simply keep it in the fridge then give it a quick spin in microwave when I want to use it. Oh my yum.

It is exactly like stuff from Dairy Queen except it comes with piece of mind of knowing what you are eating.

Roasted Banana Ice Cream with Hard Chocolate Topping

A popular late night snack around here is dipping slices banana in melted chocolate then freezing them. We slice and dip before starting Little’s bedtime routine. By the time he is finally out the bananas are deliciously frozen. So when I saw a recipe for roasted banana ice cream I knew I had to pair it up with the perfect chocolate topping.

And I was not disappointed.

Roasted Banana Ice Cream with Hard Chocolate Topping

Roasted Banana Ice Cream (makes about 1 quart)Adapted from The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz

3 medium overripe bananas, peeled and cut into large pieces
1/3 packed brown sugar
1 tbsp butter, cut into small pieces
1 1/2 cups whole milk (plus extra for thinning if needed)
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 tsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
1/4 tsp salt

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. In a shallow baking dish toss together the banana, brown sugar and butter. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally. Once caramelized and delicious, remove from the oven.

In a blender combine the banana mixture, milk sugar, vanilla extract, lemon juice and sea salt. Blend until smooth. Chill until very cold, preferable overnight. When you remove it from the fridge check the consistency. I needed to add about 1/2-2/3 cup milk to thin it enough to work in my ice cream maker. Mix in your ice cream maker according to the directions.

Roasted Banana Ice Cream with Hard Chocolate Topping

Chocolate Topping (“magic shell”) (makes about 1 cup)
Adapted from Skip to My Lou

3/4 cup chocolate (preferably really good dark chocolate chopped but chips will do)
1/4 cup coconut oil

Melt chocolate chips and coconut oil in the microwave about 1 minute (depending on your microwave). Allow to sit a few minutes to allow the heat of the oil to melt the chocolate chips and then stir until smooth. It will be runny. Pour over ice cream. Wait a few moments for it to harden. Enjoy.

Roasted Banana Ice Cream with Hard Chocolate Topping

Tiramisu Ice Cream Cake (100th post!)

Hi.

I’m a bit teary eyed right now. Honestly.

I never thought about getting to 100 posts. When I started this tiny blog I had no idea what to expect. I still have no idea what is going on here. It seems though, and correct me if I am wrong, that I have at least a few of you reading on a regular basis. It also seems that you like my recipes. And, although there has been a bit of a hiatus lately, it seems that my pictures aren’t half bad (have you noticed my FoodGawker and TasteSpotting badges?).

Tiramisu Ice Cream Cake

So for this 100th post I made a cake. Well… that isn’t really true. I made my dad a birthday cake and decided to make it my 100th post. Are we still friends? Good.

This cake took me six days to make. It required an absurd amount of mascarpone so like any reasonable idiot that I am I opted to make my own. Yeah. I made my own mascarpone. Then I made ice cream twice, did battle with an argumentative pound cake, sweated bullets while trying to assemble a mess of melting ice cream, and whipped up the most amazing hot mocha fudge sauce. If you are keeping track that was five separate recipes plus assembling the little monster.

Tiramisu Ice Cream Cake

You know what? It was a huge hit. My very first ice cream cake was met to rave reviews, clean plates, and requests for more cake in the future. The texture and flavor of this cake is beyond compare. The ice creams are smooth and rich offset by the butter pound cake which stayed soft even when frozen. And the fudge sauce. Oh the mocha fudge sauce. So incredibly delicious and it elevated the cake from delicious to spectacular.

The next birthday I get to make a cake for is mine and I want ice cream cake too. Hopefully the next one wont take the better part of an entire week. I’m thinking chocolate cake with mint ice cream. That is if the mint in my yard gets a growin’ here soon.

Tiramisu Ice Cream Cake

Ps. Thanks for being my reader. Much love.

Tiramisu Ice Cream Cake (makes 1 cake with 10-12 servings)
Adapted from Gourmet Cookbook

1 pound cake (I used this recipe omitting the rosemary) sliced lengthwise in to four layers.
3 tablespoons dark rum
2 tablespoons Kahlúa
3 ounces fine-quality bittersweet chocolate, grated

For the mascarpone ice cream:
2 large whole eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups mascarpone (about 17 ounces, available at most cheese shops and some specialty food shops)

For the espresso ice cream:
2 large eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
4 tablespoons instant espresso powder dissolved in 3 tablespoons boiling water

Make the mascarpone ice cream:
In a bowl with an electric mixer beat the whole eggs and the sugar until the mixture is thick and very pale and beat in the vanilla, a pinch of salt, and the mascarpone until the mixture is combined well. In a bowl beat the egg white until it holds soft peaks and beat it into the mascarpone mixture. Chill the mixture until it is cold and freeze it in an ice-cream freezer according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Make the espresso ice cream:
In a bowl with an electric mixer beat the eggs and the sugar until the mixture is thick and very pale and beat in the vanilla, the milk, the cream, and the espresso mixture, cooled. Chill the mixture until it is cold and freeze it in an ice-cream freezer according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Assembly:

On a baking sheet toast the pound cake slices in one layer in the middle of a preheated 350 °F. oven for 8 to 10 minutes, or until they are colored lightly and dry. In a small bowl stir together the rum and the Kahlúa, brush the slices on both sides with the mixture, and let them cool on a rack.

Line a loaf pan 9 by 5 by 3 inches, with plastic wrap, letting the plastic wrap hang over the edges by several inches, Lay one pound cake layer in the pan and pack in half the espresso ice cream, smoothing it, and sprinkle the top with 3 tablespoons of the chocolate. Lay in another pound cake layer and pack in the mascarpone ice cream, smoothing it, and sprinkling the top with 3 tablespoons of the remaining chocolate. Lay another layer of the pound cake down, pack in the remaining espresso ice cream, smoothing it, and lay the last pound cake layer on top, packing the cake in firmly. Fold the plastic wrap over the top and freeze the cake overnight. Invert the cake onto a platter, discarding the plastic wrap, and sprinkle any remaining chocolate decoratively over the top.

Tiramisu Ice Cream Cake

Mocha Fudge Sauce (makes 2 cups)
Adapted from Gourmet Cookbook
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 1/2 tablespoons instant espresso powder
3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped fine
1/2 cup heavy cream
3 tablespoons Kahlúa
Pinch of salt
In a small heavy saucepan combine the brown sugar, the corn syrup, and the espresso powder, bring the mixture to a boil over moderate heat, stirring, and cook it, stirring constantly, for 3 minutes, or until the sugar is dissolved. Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the chocolate, the cream, the Kahlûa, and a pinch of salt, and stir the sauce until it is smooth. Serve warm.

Happy birthday dad!

Happy happy birthday Daddy. Love you bunches.

Peppermint Pattie Cookies

These cookies were part of a secret mission.

A delicious secret mission.

See, my dear friend Mike came home from Afghanistan. If you have been reading here for a while you can recall that when he left for Afghanistan last summer I made him a peppermint pattie cake. It was a huge hit.

Last Wednesday I saw this cookie recipe and knew in a heartbeat I had to make it for him. Not wanting to intrude on his first weekend home and his time with his lovely girl Bev, I decided to play ding dong ditch. It is actually one of my items on the list of 30 things I want to accomplish before I turn 30- #6 play ding dong ditch 6 times and leave behind tasty treats.

Peppermint Pattie Cookie

You know what ding dong ditch is right? You go to someone’s house, ring the doorbell, then run away (ditch) before they get to the door. Mostly it is done as a practical joke. I find it a fun way to unload excess baked goods.

The problem was these were so good they almost didn’t make it to his house. I had the thought several times of just eating them all myself since he would never know he didn’t get them. The brownie cookie is superb. Be sure to make them on the small side because they are quite rich. The frosting recipe only made enough to frost about two dozen cookies so either make extra or just enjoy the plain brownie cookies. That was our compromise actually- we kept the dozen that didn’t get frosted. They are perfect for breakfast. Honestly.

Peppermint Pattie Cookie

One final note- I am always learning things. The original recipe author had a hard time drizzling the chocolate so I opted to make a piping cone out of parchment paper to do my chocolate decorating. Problem was I had no idea how to make the paper piping cone. You tube came to rescue. I highly recommend watching the video and making your own. It made decorating the cookies SO easy. Then the leftover ganache went in my latte. Cause you know… That’s where it belongs.

Peppermint Pattie Cookie

Peppermint Pattie Cookies (makes 3 dozen cookies and frosting for 2 dozen)
Adapted from How Sweet It Is

Cookies
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) of unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 cup loosely brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 egg + 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup dark chocolate chips

Peppermint Icing (increase by 1/2 if you want to frost all your cookies)
2 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
3 tablespoons evaporated milk
1/4 teaspoon vegetable oil
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract

Ganache
3 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
2 tablespoons heavy cream

Peppermint Pattie Cookie

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Mix the flour, cocoa, salt and baking soda in a bowl and set aside. In the bowl of your stand mixer, mix the cooled butter and sugars until they are combined. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla and stir until mixed. Gradually add in dry ingredients and mix until a dough forms – it will look crumbly at first, but it will come together. Fold in chocolate chips.

Roll dough into 1-1 1/2-inch balls (about 1 Tbs) and place on a nonstick baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until the middles are just set.  Let cool completely.

While cookies are cooling, add powdered sugar, butter, milk, vegetable oil, vanilla and peppermint extracts to the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat until smooth and creamy. Use a spatula and spread the peppermint cream over the top of each cookie evenly.

Once the frosting has had a chance to dry (about an hour) carefully microwave the dark chocolate and heavy cream till melted and smooth (I did it in 30 second increments). Either drizzle or pipe the chocolate decoratively over the cookies. Allow to harden.

 

Almond Joy Cupcakes

I love candy. Above all I love candy with good chocolate.I CANNOT do crap chocolate. Those little silver kisses? Ewww! I’ll spit them straight out. No matter how bad my chocolate craving those don’t count as edible to me. I can’t do snickers or the like either. The chocolate just isn’t right.

Can I confess that I cannot remember the last time I ate a whole candy bar ? It makes me feel smug. I feel way too guilty picking one up at the store and even more guilty devouring a whole candy bar at once. However I seem to have no qualms about eating lots of little bites off a large chocolate bar or repeatedly returning to the chocolates my parents had set out at their house yesterday. Somehow if you can eat them in two bites or less they are better for you. Right?

Almond Joy Cupcakes

My sister, God bless her, bought a tin of Quality Street chocolates (don’t know what they are? See here). We had to figure out what filling was in each colorfully wrapped chocolate and ate maybe four or more each in less than 10 minutes. Ok maybe it was closer to six. My absolute favorite out of the whole tin was the blue one- chocolate covered coconut. The second I bit in to it I was reminded of these cupcakes. I can’t believe I skipped sharing them with you.

So if the chocolate is small or comes with cake I have absolutely no self control. I’m glad the tin of Quality Street went home with my sister and that these cupcakes are long gone.

These cupcakes are impressive and ridiculously easy. If you are a fan of Mounds, or Bounty, or the blue Quality Street chocolates, or coconut then these are for you. I think the frosting would make a great filling for a layered cake too.

Almond Joy Cupcakes

Almond Joy Cupcakes (makes about 18)
adapted from Your Cup of Cake

1 batch of your favorite chocolate cupcakes (I used half this recipe. You could even just use a box mix if you want)

Coconut Topping:
1/4 cup butter, softened
8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups shredded coconut
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3-4 cups powdered sugar
2 cups chopped chocolate

Bake and cool your cupcakes per your recipe (or box).

Beat butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add shredded coconut and vanilla, mix again. Slowly add powdered sugar until you reach your desired consistency. Pipe your topping onto cooled cupcakes. Use a knife to smooth out the topping. Place chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl and melt and stir until smooth. Dip cupcakes into chocolate and then sprinkle almonds on top. Do it quickly before the chocolate cools.

Almond Joy Cupcakes

Perfect Chocolate Frosting

I realized that back when Little turned one (in September) I had a request for the recipe for the frosting on the cupcakes I served at his party. Yeah. Never got around to posting it. Sorry about that.

So today’s post is short and sweet. Just this quick recipe. Don’t take the length of this post as an indicator of the quality of this recipe. This frosting is perfect. Go frost cupcakes today and give them to your loved ones with an extra hug and kiss.

Perfect Chocolate Frosting

Perfect Chocolate Frosting (frosts about 2 dozen cupcakes)
barely adapted from What Megan’s Making

1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups (7 ounces) confectioners’ sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup (4 ounces) bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled slightly
1-2 tablespoon heavy whipping cream
pinch of salt

Combine the butter and confectioners’ sugar in a bowl of stand mixer and beat on medium-low speed until well combined, about 1 minute. Add the vanilla and chocolate and beat on medium speed until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the cream and a pinch of salt and beat on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy.

Snickers ice box cake

Growing up my mom used to make this delicious desert with cookies and pudding. She layered vanilla and chocolate pudding with these plain cracker like cookies ubiquitous in every household in Spain. This particular desert was a staple on the menu at the camp we went to every summer. This means it was made in bulk. There was always leftover pudding to steal and, since it was my mom in the kitchen, I could usually swipe an extra serving or two.

I had to idea that desert was what is considered an ice box cake. The traditional ice box cake involved whipped cream and chocolate wafers. Over the years it has evolved to mean a layered desert of cookies and pudding, whipped cream, and/or frosting. Delicious.

When I saw this recipe for a snickers cake I knew I had to make it for Nathan’s birthday (he turned 30! last week). Nathan is a snickers fiend. Layers of peanut butter and chocolate pudding sandwiched between graham crackers that get a cakey texture are smothered in homemade caramel and chocolate ganache. It was gorgeous.

snickers ice box cake

I am kinda on the fence about this particular recipe. It was impressive looking for sure but I don’t really care for chocolate and peanut butter so… I felt kinda eh about it. He loved it so I guess that is all that matters. There will be more ice box cakes in my future. I’m sure of it.

snickers ice box cake

Snickers Ice Box Cake (serves 8-10)
Adapted from Bakers Royale

Ingredients:

1 box graham crackers

Pudding:
2/3 cup cornstarch
1 cup granulated sugar
Pinch of salt
6 cups cold whole milk
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cups dark chocolate, chopped
3/4 cups creamy peanut butter

Caramel sauce
1 cup sugar
6 tablespoons water
4 tablespoon butter
1/2 c heavy cream

Ganache pouring sauce
2/3 cups dark chocolate
2 tablespoons heavy cream
4 tablespoons powdered sugar, sifted
4-5 tablespoons water, warm

Snickers, chocolate bits or peanuts for topping

snickers ice box cake

Make the pudding:
Combine cornstarch, sugar, and salt in a dry sauce pan. Whisk well to combine. Slowly add the milk while whisking. Place over medium heat and stir often.  Pudding is ready when it it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Add vanilla to mixture. Split mixture in half and add chocolate to one half and whisk to combine. Add peanut butter to remaining half and whisk to combine.

Make caramel sauce:
Place sugar and water into a saucepan over medium low heat and stir the until sugar has dissolved. Dissolve any crystals forming on the side with a wet pastry brush. Once sugar has dissolved increase heat to high. At this point do not stir the mixture directly. Now and then, using the handle, give the pot a swirl to keep the mixture moving. The mixture will start to bubble after a minute or so. Once the mixture starts to turn a light golden shade, add the butter and heavy cream. The mixture will bubble wildly. Whisk to combine (bubbles will subside upon cooling). Set aside to cool completely.

Make ganache pouring sauce:
Place chocolate and heavy cream in a bowl over simmering water. Let chocolate and cream sit for 2-3 minutes to melt without stirring. Then slowly stir mixture to combine. Add powdered sugar and mix to combine. Add water 1 tablespoon at a time, mixing after each addition until pouring consistency is reached. Set aside and let sauce cool to warm.

snickers ice box cake

Assemble:

Create a sling by placing a piece wax paper in a bread pan with a 1 inch overhang on each side (I tested out three pans to find the one the graham crackers fit in best). Line the pan with plastic wrap.  Place graham crackers side-by-side until bottom of pan is covered. Spread a thin layer of chocolate pudding on top. Place second layer of graham cracker on top of chocolate pudding. Spread a thin layer of peanut butter pudding on top. Continue alternating layers with chocolate and peanut butter pudding while separating each pudding layer with a graham cracker layer. Finish with a graham cracker layer. Cover tightly and refrigerate overnight.

Unmold, plate and pour cooled caramel sauce on top and set aside to set. Pour cooled ganache sauce on top and add chopped Snickers, or chocolate bits and peanuts on top. Finish with caramel and chocolate drizzle if desired.

snickers ice box cake

Brownie cookies with salted caramel frosting

Brace yourself.

For so many reasons.

First. These cookies. They are shut-up-shove-them-in-your-face good.

Brownie cookies with salted caramel frosting

Second. This frosting. I have plans for it. So.Many.Plans.

I feel like I say this a lot but these cookies really are a breeze. Other than chopping some chocolate there really is nothing to them. They are incredibility delicious all on their own too. I would happily shovel them down with a tall glass of cold milk.

Brownie cookies with salted caramel frosting

The frosting on the other hand was a bit more work. Making your own caramel is a cinch. I followed this great step by step tutorial from Bakers Royale. My caramel ended up being fairly hard when it cooled so I rewarmed it and thinned it with some more cream. Once it was cool (for the second time) I was able to use it in the frosting.

Brownie cookies with salted caramel frosting

So yes, all in all there are three separate recipes here. They are time consuming but I believe the end result is worth it. I managed to make the cookies and caramel during Little’s morning naptime. The frosting was whipped up during the afternoon nap.

I wish I could say these are every day cookies. Perhaps the cookie part alone might be, that is if you are ok with two dozen cookies requiring over $4 in chocolate alone.

Brownie Cookie with salted caramel frosting (makes 10 large or 20 small two-sandwich cookies)

Adapted from Bakers Royale

Cookies:
12 oz. chocolate, chopped
3 tablespoons butter
2 eggs
2/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
1/4 teaspoon baking powder, sifted

Frosting:
1/2 cup butter
1 cup confectioner sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup caramel (Make sure caramel is cooled if making homemade)

Brownie cookies with salted caramel frosting

First make the cookies: Place 7oz. of the chocolate and the butter in a saucepan over low heat and gently stir until melted and smooth. Set aside.
Place the eggs, sugar and vanilla in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and beat for 5 minutes or until pale and creamy. Add in flour, baking powder, melted chocolate mixture, remaining 5 oz. of chocolate and mix to combine. Set aside to to stand for 10 minutes. Spoon 2 tablespoonful for a large cookie and 1 tbs full for a small of the mixture, onto parchment lined bake sheet. Bake for about 8–10 minutes or until puffed and cracked. Allow to cool completely on trays.

Second make the frosting: Place butter in a bowl and beat until creamed. Add in confectioner sugar and salt and beat until light combined. Add in caramel and beat until combined.

Assemble: Spread a teaspoon and a half of frosting on underside of one brownie cookie and place a second brownie cookie bottom side down on top frosting.

Ps. I am trying to learn how to take better food pictures. I read through a wonderful tutorial this weekend and spent some time taking too many pictures of these cookies. As mentioned above I utilized naptimes to cook so when it came time to take pictures… Someone was up and intent on helping.

taking pictures with a Little help