Who ever invented the ice-cream sandwich was such a genius! I grew up eating our local version sold by the ice-cream uncle, whose arrival was signalled by the unmistakable tinkling of the bell (which never failed to excite the kid in everybody) He would retrieve giant blocks of ice-cream from the mobile freezer, depending on your chosen flavour (raspberry ripple, red bean & choc mint were my favourites!), before slicing a neat rectangle and sandwiching it between two layers of crispy wafer or rainbow bread if you like. Mmmm.
Here it is, my very own take on the classic ice-cream sandwich. Instead of the huge round chewy cookies used in the American version, these feature my favourite chocolate shortbread cookies. This was closer in appearance to the frozen treats sold by our ice-cream man, just a tad more substantial and flavourful (the thin wafers were unfortunately, pretty tasteless). What better filling for my sandwiches than some homemade gelato – Dark Cherry and Espresso – made a few days earlier. Too much effort for something that disappears in a single bite? Well, these are certainly worth it and would make an awesome idea for your dinner party DIY dessert bar!
Chocolate Shortbread Cookies
Crumbly with a melt-in-the-mouth texture, but sturdy enough to contain the ice-cream filling. Delish! They also make a really good chocolate cookie crust for cheesecakes (just sayin’)
150g unbleached organic all-purpose flour
70g cocoa powder
110g unsalted butter
100g granulated sugar
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 egg yolk
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
On medium-high speed, beat the butter and sugar together until creamy and light. Add in the egg yolk, vanilla and salt. Sift in the flour and cocoa powder. Mix briefly until a sticky dough forms. On a floured surface, bring the dough together into a disk. Wrap in clingfilm and chill for 30 min. This would further firm up the dough. Roll the dough into a rectangle and cut out your desired shape, with 0.5 cm in thickness. Bake in a preheated oven at 180C until fully cooked and can be easily removed from the baking sheet without sticking. Cool and store in an air-tight container.
*To store the assembled ice-cream sandwiches, wrap each one with a narrow strip of parchment paper followed by a layer of clingfilm. Freeze til ready to eat.