Tag Archives: newman o’s

Mint Chocolate Cookie Ice Cream

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What do you eat when you’re alone? Seems like a funny question, but I imagine I’m not the only one who eats differently when I am by myself, versus when I’m cooking for others. Are you a stand at the counter no dishes kind of person? Perhaps a certain dish calls out to you – a giant bowl of popcorn? Peanut butter out of the jar with or without anything to go along with it? Toast topped with cream cheese, pickles, and lots of ground pepper (hey now, this is delicious even though it is almost guaranteed to result in people asking if you’re pregnant)? Kettle Chips by the bagful?

When I am home alone in the middle of the day, chances are I’ve spent a good majority of time washing dishes. I don’t want to make or eat a single thing that will require me to wash more dishes. Sometimes I cave; I’ll scramble eggs in one pan, add some salsa and cheese, then eat it straight out of the same pan, with the same fork that did the scrambling. Sometimes this apprehension for dishes means I’ll eat a banana, yogurt, and then granola by the handful. Or chips with salsa or hummus that is in the fridge. No dishes required. Then there are times we have just the slightest bit of ice cream left in the freezer. The only requirements: a spoon and my face. TOTALLY DOABLE.

We have had this ice cream lingering around for a little while. In part because after I made it, fed three kids, my husband and I some the day it was made, I hid it in the back of the freezer so I could come back to it whenever I wanted without having to share. (Guiltless confession!) I have a weird thing about crunchy things in my ice cream. When I was a kid, rocky road ice cream meant I’d eat everything except the nuts, which I’d spit out immediately. This lack of desire for crunchiness in my ice cream extends (but absolutely is not limited to) chocolate chips, chocolate chunks, nuts of any variety, candy pieces that aren’t soft or melty, etc., etc. The dilemma is certain flavors of ice cream I really do love – like mint chip. I just don’t like the chips. When I discovered Ben and Jerry’s Mint Chocolate Cookie ice cream, I immediately fell in love. The cookies soften just enough within the ice cream to leave chunks of chocolate goodness, while the minty ice cream balances them out. This homemade version is equally delicious and easy enough to put together!

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Mint Chocolate Cookie Ice Cream

Yields approximately one quart of ice cream.

Ingredients:
3/4 cup whole milk
1/2 cup unrefined cane sugar
a small pinch of salt
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 vanilla bean, scraped
4 egg yolks
one 9-ounce package Newman-O’s, chopped roughly
1 tablespoon organic peppermint extract

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Directions:

Warm the milk, sugar, salt and half of the heavy cream in a small pot over medium heat. Once the milk is warm, scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean into the milk mixture. Add the whole bean pod, too, along with the peppermint extract. Cover the pot and allow it to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Pour the remaining heavy cream into a small bowl (steel is preferable if you have one) then set a mesh strainer over the top of the bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Slowly pour the warm milk mixture into the yolks, stirring constantly. Scrape the warmed egg yolks and milk back into your small sauce pot.

Over medium heat, stir the egg/milk mixture constantly, scraping the bottom of the pot while you mix. Continue stirring and cooking the mixture until it thickens and can coat the back of your spoon or spatula. Pour the custard through the mesh strainer, into the remaining heavy cream, being sure to remove the vanilla bean pod. Place the custard into your refrigerator until it’s thoroughly chilled, occasionally stirring.

Once the custard is completely cold, you’re ready to churn the ice cream. Freeze the mixture in your ice cream maker, according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Once the ice cream reaches a soft-serve consistency, add in half of the chopped up cookies, allowing them to churn into the ice cream as well.

Layer the mixture in a lidded container, alternating layers with more of the remaining chopped cookies. Place a sheet of plastic wrap over the top of the ice cream, pressing it directly onto the ice cream, removing any trapped air. Cover the container with its lid as well, then allow the ice cream to harden in the freezer until it reaches a scoop-able consistency (1-2 hours or so).

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mintcookie

 

Peanut Butter Bourbon Brown Butter Brownie Cookie Cups

photo 1Some days require chocolate. Other days require chocolate and peanut butter. Sometimes a girl is simply in need of cookies. Bourbon? Hell yes, there are those days, too. Then there are those times when a person requires all of the above. This is no laughing matter. Serious business here! One must not take those times lightly, mind you. So here you’ll find the perfect solution to days that call for chocolate, peanut butter, chocolate cookies, brownie batter, and bourbon.

When I was in middle school, I had a mini cheesecake that came in a cupcake liner, whose crust was made from a Nilla wafer, which was topped with cheesecake filling, baked then topped with canned pie filling. This blew my mind at 11 or 12 years old. I quickly became a master at baking these mini cheesecakes. I decided to try other cookies. Oreo cookies were often present in our house, so those seemed like the next obvious “crust” choice. Topped with cheesecake? Oh yes. Topped with brownie batter? Oh yeah.

In the oven, the cookies soften under whatever batter you’re using, just enough to add a curiously delicious layer of flavor in whatever you’re baking. Back in those days I relied on boxed brownie mixes. Now that I am nearing 30, I rarely rely on boxed mixes because I think they’re overpriced for what you’re getting. Plus they’re often filled with things that don’t need to exist in most recipes. For the following brownie cups, I used chocolate cream Newman O’s, which are the healthier alternative to Oreo cookies. They add a cream filled crust to the bottom of these brownies, which also house a peanut butter center. The brownie batter itself contains brown butter, bourbon, and hopefully good quality cocoa. This adds a decadently rich element to the final product. I suggest eating these while they’re still warm out of the oven, but they’ll last for 2-3 days in an airtight container.

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Peanut Butter Bourbon Brown Butter Brownie Cookie Cups

Yields approximately one dozen standard sized “cupcakes”.

Ingredients:

1 stick unsalted butter
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 eggs
5 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 ounces good quality bourbon
12 chocolate cream filled Newman O’s (Oreos if you prefer)
6 teaspoons creamy peanut butter (I used Justin’s… so good!)

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Directions:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line 12 muffin cups with liners.

Melt the butter over medium heat, in a small saucepan. Stir occasionally, until the butter begins to turn golden brown. The butter will get really frothy on top. Continue stirring constantly, paying close attention. (Golden butter goes to burnt butter very quickly!) The golden butter should start to smell semi nutty. Keep stirring until the butter reaches a dark golden hue. Remove from the heat and immediately whisk in the sugars. Once the sugar is fully incorporated, whisk in the eggs, one at a time (continuous whisking is important here – nobody likes scrambled eggs in their brownies!).

In a small bowl, sift together the cocoa powder, flour, baking powder and salt. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined. Carefully stir in the vanilla and bourbon until well incorporated.

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Place one Newman-O in the bottom of each lined muffin cup. Place a half teaspoon of peanut butter on top of each cookie, right in the center of it. Fill each muffin cup with brownie batter, spooning it over the peanut butter and cookie, until the cups are about three quarters of the way full.

Bake for 25-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of each brownie comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow the brownies to cool in the pan for 10 minutes, before transferring to a wire rack to continue cooling.

Store in an air-tight container. If you have any leftovers, of course!

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