Let me tell you a little bit about the cookies in these ice-cream sandwiches. They’re actually my favorite chocolate chip cookie ever. The recipe is adapted from Kim Boyce’s Good to the Grain, a book I like very much, and they’re made with wholemeal flour, so their texture is much richer and nuttier than cookies made with plain flour. They’ve got so much dimensionality and, dare I say it, complexity. The pumpkin ice-cream is not too rich and very pumpkin-y. Together, the two fulfill some sort of dessert fantasy of mine.






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  • 240 g (1½ cups) wholemeal flour
  • ¾ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • 125 g cold unsalted butter, cut into 1 cm pieces
  • 110 g (½ cup) firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 110 g (½ cup) caster sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 120 g ( cup) dark chocolate chips

Pumpkin ice-cream

  • 1 cup canned unsweetened pumpkin puree (see Note)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 250 ml (1 cup) pouring cream
  • 250 ml (1 cup) full-cream milk
  • 165 g (¾ cup) firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 5 egg yolks
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

Cook's notes

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 4 hours 50 minutes

You will need to begin this recipe 1 day ahead. 

To make the ice-cream, whisk the pumpkin puree and vanilla in a bowl, then refrigerate until needed.

Place the cream, 125 ml (½ cup) milk and 110 g (½ cup) brown sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook until bubbles form around the edges of the pan, for about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat.

Meanwhile, place the egg yolks, cinnamon, ginger, salt, nutmeg, the remaining 125 ml (½ cup) milk and the remaining 55 g (¼ cup) brown sugar in a bowl. Whisk until smooth and the sugar begins to dissolve.

To temper the egg mixture, gradually pour some of the hot cream mixture, about 1 cup, into the egg mixture, whisking the whole time. Pour the egg mixture back into the pan. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until it is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon and leaves a clear trail when a finger is drawn through it, 4–6 minutes. Strain through a fine sieve into a large bowl and cool for about 10 minutes.

Remove the pumpkin mixture from the fridge and whisk into the cooled custard until smooth. Cover and put the bowl in the fridge to cool, 4 hours to overnight.

Transfer the mixture to an ice-cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer the ice-cream to a container and freeze until the desired consistency.

Meanwhile, to make the cookies, preheat the oven to 180˚C. Line a baking tray with baking paper.

Sift the wholemeal flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt into a bowl. Add the butter and sugars to the bowl of an electric mixer with a paddle attachment. On low speed, beat until the butter and sugars are just blended, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the egg and beat until combined, then beat in the vanilla. Add the flour mixture and beat on low speed until barely combined, about 30 seconds. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. Add the chocolate all at once and mix on low speed until evenly distributed. You can also use your hands to incorporate the chocolate.

Scoop 2 tbsp mounds of dough onto the baking tray. You might want to flatten the dough a bit for a flatter cookie. Bake for 16–20 minutes, rotating tray halfway, or until the cookies are dark brown. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.

To assemble the sandwiches, let the ice-cream soften a little. Spread about 3 cm-thick over a baking pan, then using an ice-cream scoop, scoop ice-cream onto a cookie and sandwich with another cookie. Repeat with remaining ice-cream and cookies. Serve immediately or freeze until ready to serve.


• Canned pumpkin puree is available online.


Recipe from The Tart Tart by Linda Xiao, with photographs by Linda Xiao.