ELLE Eats: The Ice Cream Sandwich

Courtesy of ELLE food editors Jackson & Levine

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We, like Joey Tribbiani and Homer Simpson, love a sandwich. In fact, we couldn't really think of a way to improve on it.

What's that you say? Replace the bread with cookies and the filling with ice cream? OK, that could probably do it.

We've had the cupcake craze, the whoopie pie craze, the meringue craze, the donut craze, the cronut craze - but all pale in comparison next to the new kid on the block. Technically two sweet treats in one, say hello to the ice cream sandwich.

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We are pleased to tell you we have the inside scoop on this movement, thanks to our resident food bloggers Alice Levine and Laura Jackson. When Alice's friend from university, Richard Makin, said he was renovating an ice cream truck and starting a 100% natural, small-batch ice cream company, Blu Top, she selflessly offered to do any tasting duties required. She even signed up for a shift in Barbara, the van.

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Plenty have been drawn in on Instagram by Blu Top's great flavour combinations; bourbon whisky old fashioned on cinnamon snickerdoodle cookies, anyone? Or perhaps hedgerow ice cream sandwiched with caramel popcorn cookies? Plus, here's one to try at home.

Bananas Foster Ice Cream & Brown Butter Choc Chip Cookie

'There's no better combination than Bananas Foster (a New Orleans classic, where bananas are flambéed in rum and brown sugar), and the nutty flavours of our brown butter choc chip cookies,' Makin tells us.

MAKE THE ICE CREAM

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Milk (ml) 540

Double Cream (ml) 210

Sugar (g) 150

Skimmed Milk Powder (g) 55

Egg Yolk 3

Corn Flour (g) 25

Vanilla paste - 1tbsp

3 large very ripe bananas

Spiced Rum - 150ml

Dark brown sugar - 50g

MAKE THE BANANAS FOSTER 

Roughly chop the bananas and put them in a medium sized pan with the brown sugar and the rum.

Cook the bananas on medium low heat for around 20 minutes, stirring every few minutes. The bananas should become very soft very quickly.

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Once the bananas are very soft but the mix is not too thick, remove from the heat and blend with a stick blender. 

Push the banana mix through a sieve and allow to cool to room temperature. Once cooled, cover the bananas and chill in the fridge for at least an hour.

MAKE THE VANILLA BASE

Add milk, cream and half of the sugar to a large pan over a medium high heat. Using a chefs probe thermometer, heat until 40 degrees c or until a drop feels very slightly warm on the back of your hand.

Whisk together skimmed milk powder and corn flour in medium bowl

When milk mix hits 40c add around a quarter of the mix to the Skimmed milk powder and corn flour and whisk. Pour through a fine sieve back into pan of milk mix.

Add vanilla to mix and stir continuously with silicone spatula, scraping bottom of pan on medium heat. If you leave the pan too long, the cornflour will cook and the mix will become lumpy. 

Heat gradually to 70c then remove from heat.

Immediately whisk egg yolks and remaining half of the sugar until pale and foamy in the bowl you used for the skimmed milk powder and corn flour.

Temper the egg yolks and sugar by pouring the hot milk mix at very slow pace onto the egg yolks and sugar while whisking constantly.

Once around half of base has been mixed into egg yolks, pour egg yolk mix into pan with the rest of the base while stirring with spatula.

Stir continuously, scraping bottom of the pan, until custard thickens and reaches 85c. 

Immeditely plunge pan into a sink containing ice and cold water. Leave the pan there and stir occasionally - make sure the custard reaches room temperature (21c) within half an hour of being put in the ice bath.

Once at room temp, cover and chill overnight in fridge.

MAKE THE ICE CREAM

The next day, before churning, add the chilled bananas and the extra 2 tbs of rum to the custard and blend with a stick blender.

Ensuring mix is around 3-5c, churn in your ice cream machine according to the manufacturers instructions.

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Once the custard is partly frozen and around the consistency of soft-serve ( usually around 20 minutes in a home ice cream machine, dispense into a tub with a lid and freeze fully in the freezer.

MAKE THE BROWN BUTTER CHOC CHIP COOKIES

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Butter (g) 226

Granulated Sugar (g) 110

Light Brown Sugar (g) 150

Eggs (whole) 2

Vanilla extract 1 tsp

Plain Flour (g) 285

Baking Soda 1tsp

Salt 1/2 tsp

Chocolate Chips (g) 200

MAKE IT

Melt butter in medium pan, swirling occasionally, until it is completely liquid. Keep heating and swirling occasionally until butter browns slightly. Remove from heat and leave pan in shallow cold water to cool.

Mix sugar and eggs in stand mixer with paddle attachment on high speed for around 8 - 10 minutes until mix is smooth, light and ribbony. 

Once butter has cooled and is just turning opaque again on the bottom, add it to the sugar and eggs along with the vanilla and beat for another minute or two.

In medium bowl mix flour, baking soda and salt then sieve into wet mix. Stir in by hand without over mixing.

Add Chocolate chips again without over mixing. Wrap dough in cling film and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat the oven to around 165 degrees.

Once chilled, shape dough into balls around 30g each or around the size of a small walnut. - Arrange on a baking tin with a good few inches between eat ball. Pat down lightly so they don't roll around tin but don't flatten them.

Bake for around 8 minutes, rotating the tins halfway through. When revved, cookies should look slightly underdone and a little wet in the middle.

Leave to rest on the tin for 10 minutes then transfer to airtight container while still warm. 

Leave in container until cookies are cool.

MAKE ICE CREAM SARNIE

Take two cookies. Place a ball of ice cream in the middle. And enjoy!

Keep up with Jackson & Levine on Twitter and find more recipes @ELLEUK #ELLEeats.

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