Wednesday, June 15, 2011

2011 Ice Cream Cupcake Contest: S'more Kebobs!

There are few things in life better than homemade ice cream, except maybe homemade ice cream in cupcake form!  I got the ice cream attachment for my KitchenAid Mixer a couple summers ago and I highly recommend you go out as soon as possible and get one for yourself (or drop lots of "subtle" hints so that your husband buys you one for your birthday).  They cost a little over $60 but I'm assuming it will last a lifetime, which I consider a great investment!

Anyway, when local St. Louis blogger Stef, over at Cupcake Project announced the 2011 Ice Cream Cupcake Contest, it gave me the perfect excuse to break out my ice cream maker for my first batch of the summer.  As cohosts of this contest, Stef and Bethany, from Scoopalicious (check out for all kinds of ice cream awesomeness), were able to offer a fabulous collection of baking cookbooks for the winner of the contest.  For those who know me, cookbooks are one of my biggest weaknesses, after potato chips and red wine, of course.  Surprisingly, I don't already own any of the cookbooks in the collection - mega score!

So let's get down to business.  After creating Bobby Flay's Toasted Marshmallow Milkshakes a couple weeks ago, I started thinking, rather than add toasted marshmallows to vanilla ice cream, why not try to make an ice cream that actually tastes like toasted marshmallows?  Naturally, my mind went to an ice cream cupcake s'more for the contest.  I wanted to try to branch out as much as possible, so to go with the s'more/campfire theme, I decided to make ice cream cupcake s'more kebabs - YUM!  I will warn you ahead of time, if you choose to try these recipes, give yourself plenty of time for freezing between steps.  Here is the recipe I used for Toasted Marshmallow Ice Cream.  I will put my notes in red.
Toasted Marshmallow Ice Cream
from The Roasting Rambler

10 ounces marshmallows
2 cups skim milk (I used whole to achieve a creamier flavor)
1 cup heavy cream
5 egg yolks
scant 1/2 cup sugar
1 vanilla bean (split in half and scrapped)
1 tsp vanilla
pinch salt

Move one of the shelves in your oven to the highest possible position and preheat the broiler at high for a few minutes. Meanwhile, line a large sheet pan with parchment paper or a silicon mat and spread the marshmallows over the pan in a single layer. Place the pan directly under the broiler and watching closely, let them start to brown. Once they start to toast remove and place in the refrigerator to cool completely. Then flip each marshmallow over and toast the other side. If the marshmallows start to expand too much make sure to remove them before they hit the heating element.

Making the ice cream base
Transfer the toasted marshmallows to the blender. Put the milk and the vanilla bean and scrapings in a heavy bottomed pan and turn the heat to medium. Stir regularly bring the milk up to a light simmer (it should be steaming, but not boiling much). While the milk warms up, put the egg yolks, sugar, and salt into a bowl and whisk together vigorously until the mixture is pale yellow.

Once the milk is hot, remove the vanilla bean and add about 1/4 cup of the milk to the egg yolk mixture while stirring. Once the milk and eggs are well mixed, add a litte more hot milk and mix again. You’re gently warming the eggs so that you don’t end up with creamy scrambled eggs. Then pour the yolk/milk mixture into the milk in the pan and start stirring gently, but constantly. Allow the mixture to heat back up to steaming, but make sure that the mixture doesn’t boil. The mixture should thicken up to about the consistency of heavy cream. Take it off the heat and stir vigoursly for about 3 minutes to cool slightly and then pour into the blender with the marshmallows. (Your blender will be very full, I let mine sit for a few minutes and gently pressed the mixture down before blending).



Cover the blender and run it for about a minute to mix well and then allow the mixture to sit for a couple of minutes (this helps the remaining marshmallow chunks to start breaking down). Run the blender again for about a minute and then add the vanilla and the cold cream and run the blender for about 30 seconds more. Pour the mixture into a bowl, cover, and place in the refrigerator. Refrigerate for at least 8 hours. Right before churning in your favorite ice cream maker, whisk the ice cream mixture to throughly blend everything together. Churn in your ice cream maker and then allow the ice cream to ripen in the freezer for at least two hours.

Now, my ice cream never did get super hard which made the kebab part a little difficult.  I'm not sure if it would have gotten harder if I had used skim milk but either way it tasted delicious!

Chocolate Ganache Topped Mini Cupcakes

Ok, for the cupcake part I was bad and used a cake mix, the food blogger's nightmare.  Sorry people!  So you can use a cake mix too or your favorite chocolate cake recipe.  I added one piece of Hershey's bar, broken in half, to each mini cupcake.  I was able to make 48 minis plus 4 regular sized cupcakes out of one box of mix (I am saving extras for another project).  Be sure to cool completely before adding ganache. 
 
Easy Ganache  

6 squares semi sweet baking chocolate
1 tub Cool Whip (frozen)

Melt together in the microwave for about 2 minutes (stirring every 30 seconds) until chocolate is completely melted and mixture is smooth and glossy.  Allow to thicken for at least 15 minutes before topping your mini cupcakes.
Once your cupcakes are topped with ganache, freeze until firm.  (I skipped this step and things got messy).

Now that your cupcakes and ice cream are made, it's time to make your ice cream balls.  Simply take a packet of graham crackers and pulse several times in a food processor until it is mostly finely ground with a few bigger pieces throughout.

Working quickly, use a small cookie scoop and scoop smalls balls of ice cream, roll in graham crackers and put on a cookie sheet.  Return to the freezer until they firm up again.  Like I said earlier, my ice cream was never really firm but still tasted delicious.  Set up an assembly line with your ice cream, graham crackers and cookie sheet before you start rolling.
 


Once all of your components are made and frozen you can begin to assemble.  I made six skewers so I needed 12 cupcakes and 12 ice cream balls.  Set up an assembly line with your ice cream, graham crackers and a cookie sheet.  Working quickly again, skewer cupcake, ice cream, cupcake, ice cream and lay on your cookie sheet.  Freeze again and serve immediately when you remove from the freezer.

Although my original idea was to eat the s'mores directly off the skewer, they are probably best served on a plate since they are quite messy.

Also, if you have leftovers like I did, feel free to put together a deconstructed s'more sundae or make a tupperware filled with ice cream balls covered in graham crackers and keep your ice cream "truffles" in the freezer for a quick treat!

Be sure to head over to Cupcake Project's Facebook page for more droolworthy submissions!  Thanks again to Stef and Bethany for hosting this yummy contest! 
 

 

12 comments:

  1. I think that I may just make the ice cream.....yummo!

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  2. I LOVE this idea--so creative! I've been making tons of ice cream lately (3 flavors at home right now haha) and this is definitely one I plan to try SOON!

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  3. Great idea for the contest! Things got crazy and I never got mine together, which is sad. I love your idea though!

    P.S. We have to hang out soon!

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  4. I love that your toasted marshmallow ice cream includes ACTUAL toasted marshmallows! Delicious!

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  5. OMG! I MUST try making the toasted marshmellow ice cream. AMAZING!

    Bethany@scoopalicious

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  6. This looks SO SO good! Such a cute presentation, and that marshmallow ice cream sounds super yummy! :)

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