Classic cookie dough ice-cream gets a festive feel with this crazy-cool sandwich. Combining gingerbread cookies with gingerbread dough ice-cream (yum!) and rich, caramel praline, this dessert has "Aussie summer" written all over it.
- 600 g (4 cups) plain flour, sifted, plus extra, to dust
- 220 g (1 cup firmly packed) brown sugar
- 250 g molasses sugar (unrefined cane sugar) (see Note)
- 2½ tbsp ground ginger, plus extra 1 tsp for icing
- 1 tsp ground cloves
- ½ tsp ground allspice
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 300 g cold unsalted butter, chopped
- 4 eggs
- 330 g royal icing mixture
- 330 g (1½ cups) caster sugar
Gingerbread dough ice-cream
- 1.8 litre thickened cream
- 12 egg yolks
- 1 cup (220 g) caster sugar
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Chilling time 1 hour and 30 minutes
Churning time 50 minutes
Freezing time overnight and 30 minutes
Cooling time 2 hours
You can make gingerbread dough ahead of time and freeze mixture at the end of the first step.
Process flour, brown sugar, molasses sugar and spices in a food processor until combined. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add eggs and process until mixture comes together. Cover dough in plastic wrap and chill for 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 180°C and line an oven tray with baking paper. Cut dough in half. Re-wrap one half and return to fridge. Place remaining half of dough on a lightly floured work surface and roll out to 2 cm-thick. Place on prepared tray and bake for 10 minutes or until lightly cooked but still doughy. Cool completely, then break into pieces and set aside.
To make the gingerbread dough ice-cream, heat cream in a saucepan over medium heat to just below boiling point. Whisk egg yolks and sugar in a large, heatproof bowl until well combined, then, whisking constantly, gradually pour hot cream mixture into yolk mixture. Transfer to a clean saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, for 8 minutes or until mixture is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon (don't let mixture boil).
Strain mixture through a fine sieve into a bowl. Cover surface with plastic wrap, cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until cold.
Transfer to an ice-cream maker and churn for 25 minutes until semi-frozen. Stir through dough pieces and then continue to churn for 25 minutes until frozen. Transfer to two lined 20 cm x 30 cm lamington pans and cover with plastic wrap. Freeze overnight or until firm.
Roll out remaining dough to 5 mm-thick and cut into 24 x 6 cm x 10 cm rectangles. Preheat oven to 180°C. Place rectangles on a lined oven tray and bake for 15 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Invert ice-cream onto a chopping board. Cut each block into 6 x 6 cm x 10 cm rectangles (you can refreeze leftover ice-cream). Sandwich each rectangle with gingerbread. Place on a lined tray in the freezer until needed.
Combine icing in a bowl with 80 ml water and extra 1 teaspoon of ground ginger. Dip half of each sandwich into icing mixture, allowing excess to drip off. Freeze for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, line an oven tray with foil and grease. Combine caster sugar with 60 ml water in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir to dissolve sugar. Increase heat to medium-high and simmer for 6 minutes or until a dark caramel. Quickly pour over prepared tray in an even layer. Set aside for 30 minutes to cool and set, then break into shards. Place in a food processor and process until fine.
Roll iced end of the ice-cream sandwiches in praline and serve immediately.
• Molasses sugar is from specialist food shops.
Photography by Ben Dearnley.
As seen in Feast magazine, Dec/Jan 2013, Issue 27.