I was completely worn out by the time we'd finished dinner last night. It was all I could do to keep my eyes open as Dani and I watched the latest episode of LOST on TiVo. But when we thought about dessert, I managed to get a second wind (that always happens). Instead of doing something complex, I suggested we make ice cream cookie sandwiches.
I've always wanted to make an ice cream sandwich from scratch. It's pretty simple to do. There are two ingredients: ice cream (duh) and cookies. What kind of each you use is entirely up to you. You could make a rocky road and macadamia nut cookie sandwich, or a pistachio and butter cookie version. Me, I prefer the simplicity of quality vanilla ice cream with any kind of soft, crumbly cookie.
We picked up a pint of premium vanilla ice cream (avoid light ice cream
or cheap stuff) and set it on the counter to thaw just slightly while
we baked our cookies. We had some frozen, pre-portioned cookie dough
handy, so we used that to make some quick and easy cookies. A tube of
dough from the supermarket will work just as well, but I suggest you at
least bake your cookies fresh. If you want to go whole hog and make
your own from scratch, it's really not that hard to do. I'm partial to
chocolate chip, but this recipe for peanut butter cookies from Smitten
Kitchen looks amazing. It's culled from the Magnolia Bakery Cookbook. Everyone knows Magnolia has some supremely mackable cupcakes, so I'm sure their cookies are badass too.
Whatever you decide on for cookies, you want to make sure that you
don't overcook them. Cookies are done long before they look like they
are -- even when they are overcooked, they'll look soft as you pull
them from the oven. If your cookies are too tough or crispy, they'll
make a poor sandwich because the ice cream filling will squirt out the
sides as your teeth try to bite through the cookie.
So soft, pliant cookies are a plus. After that, simply take a big ice
cream scooper and place one big scoop in the center of the bottom of
one cookie. Then, place another cookie on top, and gently squeeze it
down until the ice cream has spread throughout. Rocket science? Not
really! But damn good eats.
That cookie sandwich gave me the energy to finish LOST, by the way. Good thing, because Sayid episodes are always great.