Spring Strawberry Ice Cream Sandwiches

Strawberry Ice cream is a real treat for me these days. It took 18 years of being utterly annoyed by the bubblegummy toned contender, who tainted the “better” flavors it came sandwiched between in cheap cartons of Neapolitan ice cream served at children’s birthday bashes, until, I would learn to appreciate it. The first enjoyable experience I had eating strawberry ice cream was not far off from those of my childhood affairs; after all, I was still buzzing on a dopamine high and scooping mouthfuls of this pink delight directly out of a 5 gallon bucket. But this experience during my first year of college led to an appreciation of the stuff. Thank goodness our taste buds change! Or is that one of those things that adults just tell us so that we’re willing to try beets again?

I got the idea to make buttermilk ice cream from Chef Edward Lee’s cookbook called, “Smoke and Pickles.” I followed his recipe exactly, but added strawberries and vanilla to the mix of ingredients .Luckily, my first CSA share this year included a pint filled with the first harvest of beautiful little two-bite berries. Inspiration for the sandwiching came from an issue of “Sift” featuring all kinds of tempting flavor combinations involving cookies and cream. Struck  by the OG PB&J sandwich, I swerved towards AB&J, because I really really do adore the taste of almonds. Strawberry buttermilk ice cream frangipani sandwiches – it’s a mouthful- one you’ll likely enjoy.

Ingredients

For the ice cream:

2 cups heavy cream

1 cup sugar

1 cup buttermilk

1 pint strawberries

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon sugar

For the cookies:

200 grams frangipani (recipe in previous post)

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup almond flour

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2 teaspoons almond butter

1 egg white

sliced almonds

Instructions

Dissolve the sugar into heavy cream over medium heat in a saucepan; then cool to room temperature in a separate bowl on your counter top. Whisk the buttermilk into your cooled cream and sugar mixture. Allow to chill in your refrigerator for an hour. Churn this 3 ingredient mixture in an ice cream maker according to its own applicable instructions.

Slice up 3/4 of your strawberries into any shapes and sizes, then place them in a bowl. Toss 1 teaspoon of sugar and vanilla extract with sliced strawberries. Cut the remaining 1/4 pint of strawberries into neat bite-size pieces and keep separate from the rest. I like to reserve the smallest berries for this part because that means less slicing and more uniformity, I think.

Once you are nearing the final 15 minutes place the macerated strawberries and their juices in a food processor pulsing until completely liquefied. Pour your strawberry liquid and bite-size berries into the ice cream during the final 10 minutes of churning. Voilà! Now guard it in the freezer until you have cool cookies.

Scoop of coffee buttermilk ice cream straight from the machine

Preheat the oven to 350. Combine frangipani, sugar, almond flour, lemon juice and almond butter with an electric mixer. Whisk an egg white separately in a small bowl until frothy. Beat the egg white into the frangipani mixture.

Use a tablespoon to spoon out each cookie onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a Silpat. The dough will be very liquidy and loose, more like a batter consistency rather than your typical cookie dough, and will spread quickly and quite a bit. Spoon out your first cookie, but before proceeding with the rest, allow it to spread for 20 seconds or so and proceed with proper spacing; they will not spread much once in the oven.  I could only fit about 6-8 cookies onto my baking sheet. Sprinkle the tops of each cookie with sliced almonds and generously dust them with powdered sugar before placing in the oven. Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until the edges are light brown. Remember you are aiming for a chewy, yet snappy cookie, so do not over bake them but remove them from the oven when the center still feels a bit soft.

Allow the cookies to cool for at least 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack. Once the cookies are completely cooled you may scoop a generous portion of ice cream atop, then another cookie to sandwich. You know how to do it. It’s easiest to assemble the sandwiches with just churned ice cream that hasn’t frozen, but really you can do that whenever you want. I recommend letting them sit, assembled, in the freezer for at least 1 hour before eating, if you can wait. If ya don’t, it’s just messy and that’s ok. These were so delicious; I loved every bite. I hope you make some, or your own take on ice cream sandwiches, and share your experiences with me. I would love to hear about your creations! Whisk, whisk.

Almond Frangipani Cookies headed into the oven
Baked chewy, snappy cookies
Ready to be enjoyed, Strawberry Frangipani Ice Cream Sandwiches

 

Yield: About 8 ice cream sandwiches, with extra ice cream to enjoy later

Active time: 1 hour 30 minutes

Total time: 2 hours 30 minutes

Lemon Shaker Pie On A Whim

Recently I was inspired to make a pie, of which I had never heard or tasted. Scrolling through my instagram feed one day, I happened to find two pictures of lemon shaker pies and I wondered many things. Feeling inspired, yes insta-inspired, it happens to me a lot actually, I began searching for answers to my questions. I found that Shakers indeed created the recipe, frugally enough using the entire lemon, rather than just the juice, making it different from a curd pie. After a trip down memory lane, to a day during my childhood when I visited Shakertown in Kentucky, I felt even more inspired and decided to try my hand at a recipe I found from the Historic Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill Country Inn in Harrodsburg.

Ingredients

For the filling:

2 large lemons

4 eggs, well beaten

2 cups sugar

For the pie dough:

1 tsp. (5 ml) salt

3/4 cup very cold water

3 c. + 2 T. (455 g) all-purpose flour, plus a bit extra for dusting your surface

1 cup (2 sticks) very cold unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch cubes

Instructions

Slice both lemons as thin as possible, discarding all of the seeds, but leaving the skin, pith and all else. Pour the sugar over sliced lemons and mix well in a medium sized, non-reactive bowl. Leave your lemons to sit on the counter for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight, stirring them occasionally. They will quickly become syrupy.

Mix together salt and very cold water. Use a pastry cutter or 2 knives to work the cubed butter into the flour. Once you have a large crumb consistency begin drizzling in the cold water and working the mixture quickly by hand. Keep adding water a drizzle at a time until your dough has just formed but is still very rough, not smooth. On a lightly floured surface, divide the dough in half and form each portion into a 1 inch thick disk. Wrap each disk in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 450. Roll out 1 disk of pastry dough into an even circle, which is 1 inch larger in circumference than your pie tin.  Lightly butter or oil your tin and then place your dough into it, lightly pressing the dough down to meet all edges and bits of the tins surface. Roll out your second disk, just as you did the first. Leave it, ready to be used, on the counter.

Beat the eggs in a separate bowl and then add them to the lemon sugar bowl. Mix the two together well. Pour the filling into a 9-10 inch pie shell, making sure there is an even distribution of lemon pieces.

Cover your filled pie shell with your second portion of dough, as a top crust or lattice. Create a seal by lightly pressing the edges of your bottom and top crusts together.  Make sure there are slits or spaces in the top crust to allow breathing and avoid explosion.Chill in your refrigerator for 20 minutes.

Brush the crust with an egg wash and sprinkle with sugar. Pop that pie into the oven for 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to 375 and bake for an additional 20-25 minutes.

Cool the pie in its tin on a wire rack for at least 2 hours. Remove your lemon shaker pie from its tin and serve it up spring style.

Serves 8 or more

Prep time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Bake time: 35-40 minutes

Total time: about 6 hours