Wednesday, August 17, 2011

MrsDrPoe: Easy Ice Cream Cake

Once again we've come to What's for Dinner Wednesday, and once again I've decided to share a recipe with you that's merely a component of dinner...unless you want a stomach ache. The general concept of building an ice cream cake in this fashion came from my mother, and I must say that I greatly prefer an ice cream cake that actually contains cake to one that is just molded and iced ice cream. So without further ado:

Ingredients: 1-2 cakes (baked and unfrosted, any flavor and shape), 1 quart softened ice cream (any flavor), 1 bag powdered sugar, 1 quart heavy whipping cream, 1 stick softened margarine or butter, and food coloring (optional).

To begin the process, I made 2 9" round Cookie and Cream cakes from Williams Sonoma mix that Mama Wolgemuth gave me. If you prefer to have a smaller ice cream cake, you could make a single cake in a 9" round pan, 13x9 pan, or a loaf pan and cut this single cake in half (so that you end up with 2 cake circles half the height of the original cake, etc.). Any flavor* cake works fine, so please make this recipe your own! After the cakes have cooled, wrap them in plastic wrap, and place them in the freezer for an hour (this step can be skipped).

To soften the ice cream, set it out for approximately 15 minutes. Then take one of the cakes (or cake halves) and place it on a plate. Using a spoon and a spatula, scoop the softened ice cream onto the cake, smoothing and leveling as you go:

Use as much of the ice cream as you would like (I used a whole quart of cookies and cream* with my two cakes), again making sure that the top of the ice cream is level when you've finished with this layer. Then place the second cake (or half) on top of the ice cream, pressing down slightly. Immediately cover and place in the freezer for 15-30 minutes so that the ice cream refreezes in form.

In the meantime, make the icing by adding about 1/2 the whipping cream into your mixer bowl. Turn the mixer on med-high and let it run until the cream becomes thicker and fluffy (whipped cream). Then add in the softened butter and mix until incorporated. Add 1 cup of powdered sugar and combine. From here, you can alternately add sugar and the liquid cream by 1/4 cups and tablespoons, respectively, until the icing reaches a consistency and sweetness that you like. (You probably won't use all the cream or sugar- be sure to taste as you go!)

When the icing is how you like it, separate and color as you so desire (I left some white and colored some green). Pull the cake out of the freezer and use a spatula to cover it with a layer of icing:

Pay attention to the ice cream layer, as it may begin to melt around the edges before you finish with the icing. If this happens, carefully place the cake back in the freezer for 5 minutes or so, then pull it out and resume icing. When you're finished with this first layer, put the cake in the freezer for about 10 minutes.

Next comes the fun part- the decorating. Of course the cake shouldn't be out of the freezer for an extended period of time, so if your planned method of decorating takes more than 5-10 minutes, make sure you take plenty of breaks and set the cake in the freezer so it will stay firm. My favorite method for this cake is freehand, silly-string patterns around the top edges and simple dots or scallops around the bottom edge:

I haven't had cake recently, and this easy Ice Cream Cake is perfect for the dog days of summer, so I figured you might like to fix it with me for dessert this week. I hope you enjoy!

*Some other great cake/ice cream flavor combos:
vanilla/vanilla, vanilla/chocolate, vanilla/cookies and cream, chocolate/chocolate, chocolate/rocky road, strawberry/strawberry cheesecake, yellow/sweet corn, lemon/lemon sherbert, etc.


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