WINTER HOLIDAYS SANDWICH!: Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream on Fudge Brownies
 
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This sandwich makes a festive addition to the holiday table, especially when cut into holiday shapes with ice cream sandwich molds and dressed up with crushed candy canes. For cool, minty flavor, I much prefer pure peppermint oil (I use LorAnn brand) to peppermint extract, or even fresh mint.
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Holiday
Makes: 12
What You'll Need
For the Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream:
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • ⅓ cup (67 g) granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons golden syrup, inverted sugar syrup, or light agave nectar
  • 2 tablespoons tapioca starch or cornstarch
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 6 to 8 drops pure peppermint oil, or 1 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
  • ½ cup (100 g) bittersweet (60 to 70 percent) chocolate, chopped or chips
  • 1 tablespoon neutral vegetable oil or coconut oil
For the Fudge Brownies:
  • Neutral vegetable oil, for the parchment
  • 6 ounces (170 g) chopped bittersweet (60 to 65 percent) chocolate
  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • ⅔ cup (134 g) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon instant espresso granules (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 cup (132 g) all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
What To Do
To make the ice cream:
  1. Whisk ½ cup of the milk with the sugar, golden syrup, tapioca, and salt in a medium saucepan until no lumps remain. Stir in the remaining 1½ cups milk and the cream.
  2. Heat the mixture over medium-high heat, stirring with a heatproof spatula, until it begins to steam and slightly bubble at the edges. Adjust to a simmer and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens to the consistency of a cream sauce, about 3 minutes longer; do not fully boil.
  3. Transfer the mixture to a metal bowl set over a larger bowl of ice and water. Stir occasionally until the mixture is cool, taking care not to slosh water into the bowl. Stir in 4 to 5 drops of peppermint oil (or ¾ teaspoon extract), then cover and refrigerate until very cold, at least 2 hours. Transfer the bowl to the freezer for the last half hour before spinning it.
  4. Freeze the mixture in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s directions. While the mixture spins, melt the chocolate and vegetable oil in the microwave or in a small saucepan over low heat until you can stir it smooth. Stir in 2 to 3 drops of peppermint oil (or ¼ teaspoon extract). Let cool to room temperature, keeping it fluid.
  5. With the machine running, drizzle in the melted chocolate during the last minute of spinning. (Alternatively, drizzle the chocolate over the ice cream as you transfer it to the container, folding it in with a spatula or ice cream paddle to break it up as you go.)
  6. Transfer the ice cream to a chilled container, cover, and freeze until firm but still spreadable, about 4 hours.
To make the brownies:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F with racks in the center of the oven. Line a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with lightly oiled parchment paper or foil to cover the bottom and run up two sides to the top of the pan as a sling to later aid in lifting the brownies from the pans, or place an unlined Silpat Entremet on a flat baking sheet.
  2. Melt the chocolate and butter in a medium metal bowl nested over a saucepan holding about 1 inch of simmering water. Remove the bowl from the heat and wipe the bottom dry.
  3. Whisk the sugar, espresso (if using), vanilla, and salt into the melted chocolate. Whisk in the eggs one at a time, mixing each until smooth. Stir the baking powder into the flour, then stir the mixture into the batter with a spatula just until no white streaks remain.
  4. Spread the batter evenly in the pan, smoothing the top with a spatula. Bake until the top feels firm but a toothpick inserted near the center finds some moist crumbs clinging to it, 12 to 15 minutes, rotating the pan front to back halfway through baking. Let the brownie cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then lift out the brownie using the parchment slings and transfer it on the parchment to a wire rack to cool completely. (If using the Entremet, allow the brownie to cool completely in the pan before inverting onto a piece of plastic wrap on a flat surface and peeling away the Entremet.)
  5. Cut the cooled brownie layer in half the short way, wrap the layers in plastic, and freeze until the ice cream is ready, or at least 1 hour.
To assemble the sandwiches:
  1. Line the same pan you used to bake the brownie with plastic wrap, extending it well beyond the edges on all four sides. Place one brownie layer top-side down in the pan and spread ice cream over it in an even layer. Top with the second brownie layer, top-side up. Press firmly to evenly distribute the ice cream. Use a small offset spatula to smooth the edges.
  2. Wrap the whole block tightly in the plastic wrap and freeze until very firm, at least 6 hours or overnight, for easiest cutting.
  3. Once firmly frozen, remove the filled brownie from the pan, unwrap, and place on a flat cutting surface. Use a sharp, heavy knife to cut the block into 4 strips in one direction and 3 in the other to form 12 sandwiches, dipping the knife into hot water and wiping it dry between cuts.
  4. Alternatively, form sandwiches using ice cream sandwich molds according to the manufacturer’s directions.
Notes
TAKE IT EASY: Use a brownie mix, adding 1 teaspoon instant espresso granules, if desired. Bake the brownies in a 13-by-9-inch pan until still slightly moist at the center, about 5 minutes less than specified on the box. Use store-bought mint chocolate chip ice cream, or mix 4 to 5 drops of peppermint oil and mini chocolate chips into softened vanilla or chocolate ice cream.

DRESS IT UP: Roll the sides of the sandwiches in crushed candy canes. Serve with minty hot cocoa topped with marshmallows.
Recipe by Jennie Schacht {fork & swoon} at http://www.jennieschacht.com/2013/12/mint-chocolate-chip-ice-cream-sandwiches/