Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Southwestern quiche with hot honey


This is a sponsored post by Challenge, but the text and opinions are all mine. Thank you for supporting brands that make Kylee's Kitchen possible!

Quiche may very well be the most underrated breakfast food. I don’t understand why more people don’t get jazzed about quiche. The rich, custardy filling encased in a flaky pie crust is exactly what my dreams are made of. If I was a politician, I’d run on a platform of more quiche for America.


One of the things I love about quiche is that it can be as complex or as simple as you want it to be. The first quiche I fell in love with was quiche lorraine. It consists of bacon, onion, gruyere cheese, eggs, and heavy cream. It sounds simple enough, but the flavor combination is nothing short of heavenly.


Using quiche lorraine as my muse, I wanted to create a quiche recipe with both savory and sweet elements. My answer was to make a southwestern quiche with sweet corn kernels and jalapeños in the filling and hot honey drizzled on top.


I even added a little cornmeal to my pie crust recipe to bring out the corn flavor, but it’s just as easy to leave it out if you don’t have cornmeal on hand. I only use Challenge butter when making pie crust. Superior ingredients make superior products, and you can really tell a difference when making the crusts how much better Challenge butter is than its competitors.


The hot honey really takes the quiche from tasty to incredible. You can certainly buy hot honey, but it’s awfully expensive considering how easy it is to make. All you need is honey, hot sauce, vinegar, and red pepper flakes.


Even though quiche is considered a “breakfast food,” don’t let that stop you from eating quiche for lunch and dinner as well!




Southwestern quiche with hot honey

Ingredients

For the pie crust

  • 1 3/8 cups (180 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup (40 grams) cornmeal (if you don’t have cornmeal, use an additional 40 grams flour)
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/3 stick (154 grams) Challenge unsalted butter
  • 4.5 Tablespoons (66 grams) cold water

For the custard

  • 4 ounces bacon, medium dice
  • 3 ounces sweet onion, medium dice
  • 8 ounces corn kernels (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 jalapeño, small dice
  • 4 large eggs
  • 6 fluid ounces heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

For the hot honey

  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 Tablespoon hot sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Directions

For the pie crust 

  1. Mix flour, cornmeal, salt, and butter until pieces of butter are very small.
  2. Add water to flour mixture 1 tablespoon at a time and mix just until dough comes together.
  3. Shape dough into disk, and wrap in plastic wrap. Place in refrigerator for at least 1 hour before baking.
  4. Preheat oven to 385 degrees Fahrenheit.
  5. Roll out dough to 12-inch circle and transfer to 9-inch pie pan. Trim and crimp edges. 
  6. Line pie shel with parchment paper and pie weights.
  7. Bake until edges turn pale gold in color, about 10 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven and remove paper and weights. Bake an additional 5 minutes, or until bottom of crust turns light gold in color.

For the custard

  1. Decrease oven temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Cook bacon over medium heat in skillet. Use slotted spoon to transfer bacon to paper-towel-lined plate. Leave fat in skillet.
  3. Saute onion, corn, and jalapeno in bacon fat until onion is translucent and corn is tender, about 5 minutes.
  4. In bowl, combine and whisk eggs, heavy cream, salt, and pepper.
  5. Place grated cheese, bacon pieces, onion, corn, and jalapeño in pie shell. Pour egg mixture over everything.
  6. Bake until quiche is just set, about 35 to 45 minutes.

For the hot honey

  1. Add all ingredients to small saucepan on stove over medium heat.
  2. Allow mixture to come to a boil. Once it reaches a boil, allow it to continue boiling for 3 minutes, stirring frequently.
  3. Remove from heat and carefully pour mixture into mason jar.
  4. Allow to cool completely before topping with lid.



Coffee cardamom mixed nuts



If you're looking for something tasty to snack on while your family gathers around to play games and work on puzzles this winter, look no further than these cocoa cardamom nuts.

Cardamom is my newest "spice obsession" that I've seen pop up more and more in bakeries and restaurant menus. Cardamom brings a level of earthiness and warmth that really complements the cocoa to deliver savory-sweetness.

I also added espresso powder to the nuts. Espresso powder is known to enhance and intensify chocolate flavors.

You can use whatever nuts you like! I used a mixture of almonds, walnuts, and cashews because that's what I had at home. But feel free to use just almonds, or you could even use pecans and peanuts.

What I really like about these nuts is they'll satisfy your sweet tooth without sending you on a sugar rush. Also, they're extremely easy to make. I only used one bowl! 


Coffee cardamom mixed nuts

Ingredients

  • 1 egg white
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 pound mixed nuts
  • 1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 Tablespoon instant espresso powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.  Line baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In large mixing bowl, beat egg white and vanilla extract together until frothy.
  3. Add nuts to mixture and stir to coat evenly.
  4. Add sugar to bowl and stir until nuts are evenly coated. Repeat with cocoa powder, espresso powder, cardamom, and salt.
  5. Transfer nuts to baking sheet and spread in even layer.
  6. Roast about 40 minutes, making sure to stir nuts every 10 minutes.
  7. Remove from oven and cool on baking sheet.



Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Puff pastry snowflakes


This is a sponsored post by Challenge, but the text and opinions are all mine. Thank you for supporting brands that make Kylee's Kitchen possible!

Christmas morning is the most magical morning of the year, and I think it's deserving of an extra special breakfast. I think using puff pastry is a great way to make really easy but impressive-looking recipes. 

I made puff pastry in culinary school, and it was a very long and tedious process. And you know what—I didn't think it tasted any different from store-bought puff pastry. So that's what I used to make these pastry snowflakes, and I really think they look beautiful. My husband also pointed out that the center looks like a cross—a good reminder of the real reason for the season.

The first step in making the snowflakes is to cut your puff pastry into 6 rectangles. I like to use a pizza cutter for this. Then use a paring knife to cut "L" shapes into the 4 corners of each of the rectangles. The cuts should be made about a half inch from the edge.

You can customize these snowflakes with whatever fillings you like. I made two different flavors: cherry and lemon cream cheese. For the cherry snowflakes, I just put a little cherry preserves in the center. Raspberry preserves would be really tasty too. 

The lemon cream cheese snowflakes were my favorite. They're sweet and tart at the same time. I sweetened Challenge cream cheese with a little powdered sugar and a little vanilla, and I spread that on the center of each pastry square. I only use Challenge brand cream cheese because it's rich and tangy with no greasy aftertaste. Also, their products are 100% natural, without the use of the synthetic hormone rBST. After spreading the cream cheese, I added a tablespoon of lemon curd on top. I happened to have homemade lemon curd, but you could also use store-bought lemon curd. And if you don't have lemon curd, just add a little lemon juice and lemon zest to the cream cheese mixture. It will still be really tasty.

Once your filling is in the center, fold each of the 4 corners to the center. It should look like a bow. Then brush each of the pastry squares with egg wash. This will make the pastries shiny and golden brown.

After the pastries finish baking, dust them with powdered sugar for a finishing touch!


Puff Pastry Cherry Snowflakes

Yield: 6

Ingredients

  • 1 sheet puff pastry, thawed (Wewalka is my favorite because it's refrigerated, not frozen)
  • 6 Tablespoons of cherry preserves
  • Egg wash (1 egg + 1 Tablespoon water, mixed together)
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Cut sheet of puff pastry into 6 equal pieces
  3. Cut "L" shape into the 4 corners of each puff pastry piece 
  4. Add 1 Tablespoon of cherry preserves to center of each puff pastry square
  5. Fold the outer corners of each puff pastry square to the center
  6. Brush edges of puff pastry with egg wash 
  7. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until puff pastry starts to turn golden brown
  8. Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 10 minutes before dusting with powdered sugar

Lemon Cream Cheese Puff Pastry Snowflakes

Yield: 6

Ingredients

  • 1 sheet puff pastry, thawed
  • 4 ounces Challenge cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 1 /2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 Tablespoons of Lemon curd
  • Egg wash (1 egg + 1 Tablespoon water, mixed together)
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Cut sheet of puff pastry into 6 equal pieces
  3. Cut "L" shape into the 4 corners of each puff pastry piece 
  4. Mix cream cheese and vanilla extract together and spread onto each of the puff pastry squares
  5. Add 1 Tablespoon of lemon curd to center of cream cheese mixture
  6. Fold the outer corners of each puff pastry square to the center
  7. Brush edges of puff pastry with egg wash 
  8. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until puff pastry turns golden brown
  9. Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 10 minutes before dusting with powdered sugar





Sunday, December 20, 2020

Hot chocolate board

 

The evolution of the charcuterie board into other snacking boards has been a very popular trend in 2020. We saw the "fry board" and the "pancake board" earlier this year. And now we're seeing a more seasonal spin on the trend—the hot chocolate board. So what is it? Essentially, it's a pretty way to display all the fixings for hot chocolate so family and friends can easily customize their drinks.

It seems easy enough, but it can be overwhelming trying to figure out where to start and what to get. So I'm going to break it all down for you.

In my opinion, when building a hot chocolate board, there are four essential categories of products necessary for a hot chocolate board: sprinkles, stirrers, cookies, and marshmallows.

The first thing I placed on the board was sprinkles. I put three small bowls down the center. 

Stirrers come next. They are exactly what they sound like—anything you can use to stir your drink. I dipped compostable spoons and pretzel rods in white and dark chocolate, and I added crushed peppermint and sprinkles to make them appear more festive. You could use anything as simple as a candy cane or cinnamon sticks. I put the stirrers in separate cups and arranged them in a zigzag pattern around the sprinkles. Putting them in cups clears up space and adds height and dimension to your board. 

Next is my favorite part—the cookies! I like a wide variety of cookies, but they all had one thing in common—they were crunchy. The purpose of the cookies is to dunk them in hot chocolate, and soft, chewy cookies don't dunk well. The cookies take up the most space on the board, and I just arranged them around the stirrers.

The marshmallows went on the board last because they're so light they can easily stack on top of the cookies without it looking awkward. I used them to fill in the gaps around the sprinkles in the center. I found peppermint marshmallows at Target, so I used those in addition to regular marshmallows. I also saw chocolate marshmallows available at Meijer. And of course, you can make your own marshmallows if you want. 

As for the hot chocolate, my favorite recipe is just three ingredients: milk, dark chocolate, and vanilla extract. The ratio of milk to chocolate is 4:1, so 4 cups milk for every 1 cup of chocolate. All you do is heat the milk (any kind you want) until just before boiling (about 170 degrees), and then stir in the dark chocolate and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Serve once the chocolate is melted. If possible, I recommend keeping the hot chocolate in a slow cooker next to the board on the warm setting so the hot chocolate will stay warm when people get seconds!

Hot chocolate board

Ingredients

  • Sprinkles
  • Candy canes, spoons, cinnamon sticks, or other stirrers of choice
  • Cookies, wide variety of your favorites
  • Marshmallows

Directions

  1. Line up three small bowls in center and fill with sprinkles.
  2. Place stirrers in cups and arrange in zigzag pattern around sprinkles.
  3. Arrange cookies around stirrers.
  4. Fill in gaps in center with marshmallows.



Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Santa Suit and Santa Hat Ice Cream Cones


This is a sponsored post by Hudsonville Ice Cream, but the text and opinions are all mine. Thank you for supporting brands that make Kylee's Kitchen possible!

Home cooks of all skill levels often find themselves in the kitchen during the holiday season.


Understandably, people with little baking experience may feel a little overwhelmed, especially when there are a million other things to think about this time of year. 


Fortunately, ice cream is always in season, and there’s no denying it’s one of everyone’s favorite desserts. My family especially loves Hudsonville’s Extra Indulgent ice cream flavors, like Cookie Overload, Salted Caramel Brownie, and Crunchy Peanut Butter. The ice cream base is creamier and richer than the classic pints, and each flavor is loaded with extra pieces and swirls.


In order to make it more festive for the holiday season, I transformed regular ice cream cones into adorable Santa suits and Santa hats with just a few ingredients.


For the Santa suit cones, I purchased Keebler Fudge Dipped Cones, and I dipped the bottom of the cones into melted red candy wafers. I tried using melted white chocolate chips dyed with red food coloring for dipping, but it doesn’t set up as hard as the candy wafers. You can find candy wafers in the baking section of most grocery stores or at craft stores like Michael’s and Hobby Lobby.


In order to make Santa’s gold belt buckle, I used a little melted chocolate to draw a rectangle on the fudge part of the cone, and I added gold sprinkles on top. If you don’t have gold sprinkles, yellow sprinkles will work just as well.


The Santa hats were just as easy to create! I microwaved sugar cones for 30 seconds and carefully bent the tips of the cones to achieve the floppy hat look. You will probably need to experiment with the microwave time depending on your microwave’s strength. I used a 900-watt microwave. When bending the cone, it works best if the seam is to the back side of the bend.


Then I dipped the cones into melted red candy wafers. After they hardened, I dipped the bases and tips into melted white chocolate. I added mini marshmallows (cut in half) to achieve the appearance of fluffy white fur trim.


The Santa hats look really cute atop a bowl of your favorite flavor of Hudsonville’s Extra Indulgent ice cream. It’s perfect if you really want a cone but also enjoy eating your ice cream really slowly—like me! I like to savor every single bite.


So grab your shopping list, check it twice, and head to your local grocery store to pick up this delicious Midwest-made ice cream. Make sure to check out Hudsonville’s Scoop Locator tool to find your favorite Extra Indulgent flavor. 


Want a gift you can unwrap early? Claim your holiday coupon - and a recipe ebook filled with ice cream recipes! 





Santa Suit Ice Cream Cones

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Line baking sheet with wax paper.
  2. Melt red candy wafers in microwave for 1 minute. Remove from microwave, stir, return to microwave for 30 seconds. Repeat until candy wafers are melted and smooth.
  3. Dip cones in melted red candy wafers up to the fudge brim.
  4. Pull cone out of candy melts, scrape excess from bottom, and set on wax paper to harden. Repeat process with all cones.
  5. Melt chocolate in microwave and transfer to sandwich bag or piping bag. Snip off small corner of bag.
  6. Use bag to draw small rectangle (don’t fill it in) onto fudge part of cone.
  7. Adhere gold sprinkles to melted chocolate.
  8. Return to wax paper for a few minutes until chocolate hardens.
  9. Serve with Hudsonville’s Extra Indulgent ice cream.




Santa Hat Ice Cream Cones

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Line baking sheet with wax paper.
  2. Microwave one sugar cone in microwave for about 15 seconds. Carefully try to bend tip of cone. If it doesn’t bend, return to microwave for another 15 seconds. Repeat process until you can bend tip. I microwaved my sugar cones for 30 seconds in a 900 watt microwave.
  3. Melt red candy wafers in microwave for 1 minute. Remove from microwave, stir, return to microwave for 30 seconds. Repeat until candy wafers are melted and smooth.
  4. Dip cone in melted red candy wafers, coating everything up to the base.
  5. Pull cone out of candy melts, allow excess to drip off, and set on wax paper to harden. Repeat process with all cones.
  6. Melt white chocolate in microwave and dip base of cone and tip into melted chocolate.
  7. Adhere mini marshmallows around base and on tip. Return to wax paper to harden.
  8. Scoop your favorite Extra Indulgent ice cream flavor into bowl and serve with Santa hat on top.


Monday, December 14, 2020

Holiday snack mix ideas

Cookies are always the stars of the holiday season, but personally, I go nuts over snack mixes. So today I'm sharing a few of my favorites, like Brown Butter Rosemary Nuts, White Chocolate Peppermint Popcorn, Cinnamon Candied Pecans, and Spiced Cocoa Almonds. What are your favorite holiday snack mixes?

Brown Butter Rosemary Nuts

Ingredients

  • 3 cups unsalted, raw mixed nuts
  • 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoons cayenne pepper (add 1/4 teaspoon more if you like spice)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Directions

  1. Place mixed nuts in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 2 minutes to toast the nuts.
  2. Put butter in large microwave-safe bowl and cover bowl. Microwave for 2 minutes. Remove from bowl and stir. Continue to microwave in 30-second intervals until the butter is amber in color and there are brown flakes of butter at the bottom of the bowl.
  3. Remove butter from microwave. Stir in brown sugar, rosemary,  salt, cayenne pepper, cumin, and black pepper.
  4. Add nuts to bowl and mix to combine.
  5. Microwave in 30-second increments for 4 minutes, stirring each time.
  6. Spread out nuts in single layer on parchment paper and let cool before serving.

White Chocolate Peppermint Popcorn

Ingredients

  • 24 cups (about 2 microwave bags) popped plain popcorn (sea salt is fine, but not buttered popcorn)
  • 12 ounces white chocolate 
  • 1/2 cup peppermint candies (about 8 candy canes)
  • Red sprinkles (optional)

Directions

  1. Spread out popcorn in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper
  2. Crush candy canes by placing them in bag and smashing them with rolling pin
  3. Melt white chocolate in microwave in 30-second intervals until smooth, stirring each time. 
  4. Drizzle white chocolate over popcorn and sprinkle with crushed peppermint candies and sprinkles.
  5. Allow white chocolate to harden before breaking into pieces and serving.

Cinnamon Candied Pecans

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 16 ounces raw, unsalted pecans halves

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Line large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In medium bowl, add sugars, cinnamon, and salt. Whisk until combined. Set aside.
  3. In large bowl, whisk egg white and vanilla together until frothy. Add pecans and gently toss until they're well-coated. Add cinnamon sugar mixture and toss until pecans are covered.
  4. Spread pecans out in single layer on prepared baking sheet. Bake for about 30 minutes, stirring after 15 minutes. 
  5. Remove from oven and let cool on baking sheet. When completely cool, store in airtight container.

Spicy Cocoa Almonds 

Ingredients

  • 2 cups raw, unsalted almonds
  • 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 ounces chocolate (milk or dark)
  • 4 Tablespoons cocoa powder + 1 Tablespoon for dusting
  • 2 Tablespoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper 

Directions

  1. Melt butter in a medium saucepan on low heat. Add chocolate and stir frequently until just melted.
  2. Add almonds and stir to coat evenly; remove from heat.
  3. Combine cocoa powder, cinnamon, salt, and cayenne in bowl.
  4. Dump almonds and powder mixture into container with lid. Vigorously shake until almonds are coated with powder.
  5. Pour almonds onto baking sheet and sprinkle with cocoa powder to ensure all almonds are evenly coated.
  6. Let cool and then store in airtight container. 


Monday, December 7, 2020

Tikka masala shepherd’s pie

Tikka masala shepherd’s pie is a fusion of two of my favorite comfort foods. The combination of warm spices with a fluffy, creamy topping is very satisfying, especially as we head into the cold winter months. 


Normally, shepherd’s pie is made with a hearty lamb filling, and if that's something you want, go for it! But I fjust used ground beef. Also, lentils are a good option for my vegetarian friends.

When making the filling, it is very important that you brown (not burn!) the mirepoix (onion, carrots, and celery) before adding the rest of the ingredients. Caramelization concentrates the flavors of the vegetables due to the evaporation of the their moisture. It also increases the depth of flavor, which is the biggest difference between a good dish and a great dish. To do this, add your onions and carrots to the skillet, sauté them until they develop a golden brown sear, and then add your celery. It’s very important that you wait to add your celery because it gives off a lot of moisture which can inhibit the ability for the onion and carrot to caramelize.


There are numerous variations possible for the topping. Mashed cauliflower, sweet potatoes, and russet potatoes are all great options. It really depends on what you want out of this recipe. As with everything, do what is best for your diet and your health.



Tikka masala shepherd’s pie

Diet: Vegetarian

Yield: 8, 1-cup servings

Prep time: About 40 minutes

Cook time: About 20 minutes


Ingredients

For the topping

  • 3 pounds (about 6 cups) cauliflower florets, diced russet potatoes, or diced sweet potatoes
  • 8 ounces unsweetened coconut milk
  • 3 Tablespoons ghee
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne

For the filling

  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 12 ounces (about 1 1/2 cups) onion, small dice
  • 6 ounces (about 3/4 cup) carrot, small dice
  • 6 ounces (about 3/4 cup) celery, small dice
  • 8 ounces frozen peas
  • 6 ounces frozen corn kernels
  • 14 ounces of your favorite tikka masala sauce
  • Optional garnish: 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped

Directions

For the topping

  1. Place cauliflower or potatoes in large pot and cover with water. Bring water to boil, reduce to simmer, and cook until fork tender—about 10 minutes for cauliflower and 20 minutes for potatoes. Drain and return to pot.
  2. Add coconut milk, ghee, and seasonings to pot, and mash until all ingredients are mixed together.
  3. Set aside while preparing filling.

For the filling

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Add oil to large skillet and set over medium-high heat. 
  3. Cook ground beef in skillet, breaking into pieces, until browned and no longer pink. Use slotted spoon to remove ground beef and place on paper-towel-lined plate. Drain most of the fat from the skillet, leaving about 2 Tablespoons in the skillet.
  4. Sauté onion and carrots in skillet and cook until they start to brown slightly, about 6 minutes.
  5. Add celery to skillet and sauté until celery releases its juices, about 2 minutes.
  6. Add frozen peas and corn to skillet with tikka masala sauce. Continue to cook until frozen vegetables soften, about 3 minutes.
  7. Remove skillet from heat and stir in beef crumbles.

Assembly

  1. Pour filling into 2-quart (7 x 11 inches) baking dish. Spread in an even layer.
  2. Spoon topping over filling and carefully spread into an even layer.
  3. Bake uncovered for about 20 to 25 minutes. Topping should start to turn golden brown and mixture should be bubbly underneath.
  4. Cool 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with chopped parsley if desired.








Thursday, December 3, 2020

Peppermint Brownie Ice Cream Cake


This is a sponsored post by Hudsonville Ice Cream, but the text and opinions are all mine. Thank you for supporting brands that make Kylee's Kitchen possible!

Ice cream cake is my favorite cake. In fact, I always request it for my birthday, which happens to be exactly one week before Christmas. That’s why I believe it’s the perfect dessert all year round, especially when it’s made with seasonal flavors like Hudsonville’s Limited Edition Peppermint Stick.


My family used to always buy my birthday ice cream cake, but (as with everything) it tastes so much better when it’s homemade. Fortunately, I’ve learned a few tips and tricks throughout the years, and I’m excited to share them with you all.


First, it’s very important to use high-quality, premium ice cream because it stays firmer longer than ice cream made with a lot of artificial flavors and additives. I’ve tested a lot of different peppermint ice creams, and Hudsonville’s is my favorite. The mint flavor tastes very natural, and it has the perfect amount of peppermint stick crunch. 


The Limited Edition Peppermint Stick ice cream is delightful on its own, but it’s truly heavenly when sandwiched between layers of chocolate cake. Mint-chocolate is one of my favorite flavor combos. After testing several chocolate cakes, I decided my favorite is actually a brownie recipe. Brownies retain their fudginess and chew better than other frozen cakes because the high fat and sugar content lowers the freezing point.


One of my favorite parts of an ice cream cake is the crunchy fudge layer. I love the contrast in textures it provides. I’ve tried making the cake with store-bought fudge sauce and homemade fudge sauce. I honestly can’t taste a difference between the two, so I just buy fudge sauce. As for the chocolate cookies, I prefer to break them apart by hand instead of using a food processor. I think when the pieces are too small the texture becomes gritty instead of crunchy.


You’ll notice I used homemade whipped cream for the topping, but if you prefer, you can use store-bought whipped topping instead. It will freeze just as well! 


And of course, you can make whatever design you want on top of the cake, but I must say I really love the starlight mint pattern. I used a toothpick to draw the design on top of the cake, and I filled it in with crushed candy canes.


I recommend making this cake at least one day before you plan to serve it. You want to make sure all of the layers have time to freeze together.


This peppermint brownie ice cream cake looks incredibly impressive, and it will certainly be the highlight of your holiday table. Hudsonville’s Limited Edition Peppermint Stick ice cream is proof that sometimes the sweetest packages aren't under the tree—they’re in the freezer.


Use this Scoop Locator tool to find Peppermint Stick ice cream near you—it’s at Meijer in Indy-area stores! Also, click here for a coupon to save $2 on any carton of Hudsonville Ice Cream and get an ebook filled with ice cream recipes! 



Peppermint Brownie Ice Cream Cake

Ingredients

For the brownie layer

  • 7 ounces (397 grams) bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 6 ounces (3 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 cups (800 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 2/3 cup flour (200 grams) all-purpose flour

For the ice cream layer

For the fudge crunch layer

  • 1 cup (100 grams) chocolate cookies, crushed
  • 10 ounces fudge sauce

For the whipped cream layer

  • 8 ounces heavy whipping cream, chilled
  • 1/4 cup (30 grams) powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the peppermint swirl design

  • 5 candy canes, crushed

Directions

For the brownie layer

  1. Line two 9-inch cake pans with parchment paper, spray with nonstick cooking spray, and set aside.
  2. Place chopped chocolate and butter in bowl and melt in microwave until smooth. Set aside to cool.
  3. Whip eggs, sugar, vanilla, and salt with electric mixer for 3 to 5 minutes, or until mixture is pale and thick.
  4. Fold in melted chocolate and butter until smooth.
  5. Fold flour into mixture until just combined.
  6. Divide batter between cake pans and bake at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for 40 minutes.
  7. Once done, remove from oven and cool completely.
  8. Once brownie layer is cool, use serrated knife to cut through brownie so you have two equal layers. Set aside until ready to assemble cake.

For the ice cream layer

  1. Line 9-inch cake pan with plastic wrap and scoop ice cream into cake pan.
  2. Cover with more plastic wrap and smooth ice cream layer by pressing down with hands
  3. Return to freezer to harden until ready for assembly.

For the whipped cream

  1. Using a mixer with a whisk attachment, whip heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract until soft peaks form and it holds its shape when the whisk is withdrawn, about 3 to 5 minutes

For assembly

  1. Place one brownie layer on plate or cake stand—whatever you plan to serve it on.
  2. Evenly spread half of fudge sauce and half of cookie crumbs on top of brownie layer.
  3. Remove ice cream layer from freezer and place on top of fudge crunch layer. Spread remaining fudge sauce and cookie crumbs on top of ice cream.
  4. Place second brownie layer on top.
  5. Cover top of cake in whipped cream and return to freezer to harden.
  6. Before serving, remove cake from freezer and use toothpick to draw starlight mint pattern on top of cake. Sprinkle crushed candy cane over cake to create red and white swirl pattern.
  7. When it’s time to cut cake, run your knife under hot water and dry it with a towel. Repeat between every slice. A warm knife makes the cleanest cuts.


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