by Stephanie Zonis
4 to 6 sandwiches
The classic ice cream-cookie sandwich consists of chocolate chip cookies filled with vanilla ice cream; if you're lucky, there are chocolate chips coating the edges of the ice cream. It's a perfectly fine combination, but a little lacking in excitement. Here's something I like much better: a pair of soft chocolate cookies surrounding a coffee ice cream studded with chunks of chocolate-covered toffee bars. You'll need large cookies for this, and I've found Archway Dutch Cocoa to be a reliable and widely-available brand; they're about 3-1/4 inches in diameter each. If you cannot find these, use a reasonable approximation; after all, if your cookies are a bit smaller, you'll only have a few extra sandwiches. Do not use crisp cookies, though, as they will become unpleasantly soggy if frozen for any length of time. I like to use a brand of ice cream that isn't rock-hard directly out of the freezer, as it makes these easier to eat.
I buy the correct amount of chocolate-covered toffee and chop the bars by hand, as the prepackaged chopped toffee bar bits tend to be tiny and often aren't chocolate-covered. You don't want huge chunks of toffee in these (I'll usually chop 0.7 ounces of toffee into about 24 sections), but you don't want all of the toffee in tiny bits, either. If some of your chopped sections split into smaller pieces, that's not a problem. The finished sandwiches will keep in your freezer for at least a week. Because these are large, you might want to share them. Hot fudge sauce dresses these up nicely, but it isn't a necessity.
8 to 12 soft chocolate cookies,
each about 3-1/4 inches in diameter
6 to 7 ounces crisp, chocolate-covered toffee bars
1 pint best-quality coffee ice cream
Optional for Serving:
A good hot fudge sauce, slightly warmed
Before making the sandwiches, clear a space in your freezer so that they can sit flat while the ice cream refreezes. Line a shallow baking pan with aluminum foil (I have used a 7 by 11 inch pan for this, and 5 sandwiches will fit comfortably in it), and place it in the freezer.
Chop the toffee. Unwrap the bars; using a large, sharp, straight-edged knife, chop the bars into reasonably good-sized chunks. The chocolate coating may split off from some chunks, and you'll end up with a number of smaller pieces, too—OK. You want to keep the chunks to a maximum of about 1/4 inch on each side, but a few larger pieces are fine. Once the toffee has been chopped, lay out 12 cookies, each flat side up, on a sheet of wax paper on your work surface. You'll have to work quickly once the ice cream mixture is completed, and it really helps to have the cookies ready to go.
Soften the ice cream. Remove carton lid and liner (if any). Microwave at 50% (medium) power for 10 to 20 seconds, or just until ice cream is softened. with a large spoon, scoop out chunks into a medium metal bowl. Work quickly from here on out. Add the toffee chunks to the ice cream, and work them in with the large spoon just until the ice cream is in one mass and the toffee chunks are evenly distributed.
Form sandwiches by placing a large scoop of the ice cream mixture onto the upper (flat) side of one cookie. Place another cookie, flat side down, on top, and press gently. If the sandwiches aren't perfect now, don't worry about it, as they can be corrected when partially frozen. I like to place each sandwich in the freezer as soon as it's finished, but the most important thing here is that the ice cream melts as little as possible. You should have enough of the ice cream mixture for 4 to 6 sandwiches.
When the sandwiches have frozen for about an hour, check them. Ideally, the ice cream mixture will come right to the edge of the cookies. If it doesn't, press down gently on the top cookie in each sandwich until it does. Return the sandwiches to the freezer if you removed them to do this.
Freeze at least 3 hours longer. Wrap airtight, and store in freezer until just before serving. If desired, serve with a slightly warmed good hot fudge sauce.
Copyright © 2001 Francesca Chocolate Productions. All Rights Reserved.
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This page created July 2001
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