Ice cream sandwiches. Bought on a whim from a deep freeze at the corner store. A staple of very special summer childhood days with their soft, sugary cookie and lots of vanilla ice cream packed into the middle. Sticky fingers that are washed off with the water hose rather than going inside. For a brief history of the ice cream sandwich, check out this link.
To celebrate the strawberry season, I have made an adult version of the ice cream sandwich. Simple, not-too-sweet strawberry ice cream surrounded by milk chocolate and macadamia nut cookies. Made up ahead of time, they are perfect to enjoy on a whim. Or, if the cookies are just baked, you can serve within 5 minutes of taking them out of the oven (though, you may need a bowl and a spoon instead!)
Strawberry Ice Cream Sandwiches with Milk Chocolate and Macadamia Nut Cookies
Makes: Approximately 12 sandwiches depending on the size of your cookies
Time: Cookie dough prep (30 minutes) + Resting time (24 hours) + Ice cream (10 minutes) + Assembly (10 minutes)
Ice cream scoop
Soft Baked Milk Chocolate and Macadamia Nut Cookies*
284 g 1 ¼) unsalted butter, close to room temperature
284 g (1 ¼ cups)) light brown sugar
227 g (1 cup plus 2 tbsp) granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp natural vanilla extract
241 g (2 cups minus 2 tbsp) cake flour
241 g (1 2/3 cups) bread flour
1 ¼ tsp baking soda
1 ½ tsp baking powder
1 ½ tsp coarse salt
140 g (1 cup) macadamia nuts, lightly toasted and roughly chopped
440 g (3 cups) milk chocolate, roughly chopped
Strawberry Ice Cream**
½ teaspoon vanilla bean paste
½ cup (120 ml) whole milk
½ cup (120 ml) heavy cream
⅓ cup (65 g) granulated sugar
2¼ cup (400 g) frozen strawberries
Soft Baked Milk Chocolate and Macadamia Nut Cookies
1. Cream the butter and sugars using the paddle attachment of a stand mixer until light and creamy. While it is mixing, crack the eggs into a bowl, add eggs one at a time mixing well after each addition. Mix in the vanilla.
2. Whisk the flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt together. In two phases, add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients being careful not to over mix. Add the nuts and chopped chocolate using the “stir” function on the stand mixer.
3. Line a large sheet pan with wax paper. Using a large ice cream scoop (78 g or about a ¼ cup), measure and level off cookie dough mounds onto the pan, close together. Once all the dough is measured, cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for 24 hours (if you are low of space in your refrigerator, you can use a sealable container and stack the cookie dough between sheets of wax paper).
4. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Evenly space cookie dough mounds on the pan giving them enough room to spread while baking. Bake for 16-20 minutes. The cookies with seem undercooked but this is what you want. Allow to cool on the pan before removing to a rack.
Strawberry Blender Ice Cream
1. Place all ingredients in a high-speed blender. Start at a slow speed and gradually increase speed. Use a tamper to press down the ice cream and continue to blend on high until uniform. Stop the machine. If the ice cream seems watery (this will happen if you make it on a warm day), place in the freezer so that it is more solid.
1. Match cookies of similar size together.
2. Using a 78 g (1/4 cup) ice cream scoop, measure out a mound of ice cream and place on top of a cookie. Put the lid on the cookie and sandwich together. Work quickly during this assembly otherwise, the sandwiches will slide around.
3. Enjoy the ice cream sandwich immediately or wrap in parchment paper (and then place in a sealable container) and freeze up to 3 months.
* Cookie recipe adapted from Jacques Torres New York Times Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe
**Strawberry ice cream adapted from Vitamix.