Saturday, May 16, 2009


Anyone can scoop out a bowl of ice cream, but for a last-minute twist on summer tradition, turn store-bought ice-cream treats into fabulous desserts.
These no-bake goodies take less than 15 minutes to create and are simple enough for children to make. At the same time, desserts made from freezer favorites such as ice-cream sandwiches and fudge bars can be sophisticated.
"You use the freezer treats from your childhood, but add ingredients like pistachios or white chocolate to appeal to adults who want more than something cold and sweet," says chef Andy Broder, owner of Andyfood, a Culinary Studio in Scottsdale, Ariz.Broder created three freezer desserts, no-bake creations that can be made in the morning and frozen until ready to serve.

Other ideas for quickly turning ice-cream treats into desserts:
Cut an ice-cream sandwich in half. Stack halves diagonally and top with whipped cream and fresh, sliced strawberries.
Fill a parfait or wine glass with alternating layers of crumbled fruit-flavored ice pops, chocolate syrup and blueberries.
Top chocolate-covered ice-cream bars with caramel syrup and crumbled Heath candy bars.

Ice Cream Sandwiches, No Longer Frozen in Time
* The ice cream or sorbet should be just soft enough to spread on the cookies. You can use it right out of the machine, but press very gently with the top cookie to avoid smushing it over the edges.
* Freeze pre-made sandwiches on a large baking sheet (without stacking, or again, you'll smush) until they're hard, then wrap individually in plastic wrap for storage.
* Self-defrosting freezers are the bane of ice cream sandwiches. As the temperature fluctuates to prevent frost, ice crystals build up in ice cream or sorbet -- a familiar sight in a store-bought carton after a few weeks. Store sandwiches for no more than a week.
* If you're buying the cookies for the sandwiches, look for large, soft, chewy cookies. Best to go to the bakery at your supermarket and see what they've got. Remember: A crunchy cookie means ice cream in your lap.
* If you're buying the ice cream or sorbet, go for the premium varieties, most often in one-pint containers. There's less air beaten into the frozen dessert, so it's creamier and smoother.
* If you're buying both cookies and ice cream, select cookies of about the circumference of one-pint ice cream containers. (If you're making the cookies, use the carton lid as a cookie cutter.) Turn the container on its side and use a sharp, serrated knife to slice right through the carton, making 1/2 -inch-thick rounds that fit on the cookies. Peel off the carton and you've got wheels of ice cream for sandwiches. Some slices will be narrower than others, because the pint container tapers, but the difference is slight -- and a little less ice cream only means more cookie per bite.
* Keep the ice cream-to-cookie ratio at 2-1. You don't want it too thick, like a club sandwich; you should be able to easily bite it.
* Feel free to accessorize: Roll or press the sides of the sandwich in sprinkles, shaved chocolate, chopped nuts, coconut or granola.
* Be bold with colors. Sugar cookies with vanilla ice cream and a dusting of coconut would be a tad white-on-white-on-white, but sugar cookies with raspberry frozen yogurt and colored sprinkles would be a small slice of rainbow.

By Andrea Sachs Washington Post