Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Chocolate Ice Cream Cake!

Last Sunday was Adam's 31st birthday, and in honour of the number 31, I decided to make an ice cream cake a la the old 31 flavours.

I used the "your basic chocolate cupcake" recipe from "Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World", a modified version of the chocolate ice cream recipe from "How it all Vegan" and a double batch the chocolate ganache recipe from VCTOtW.

I modified the ice cream recipe to make it more chocolatey and rich by adding about twice as much cocoa as the recipe asked for, plus about another 1/4 cup of sugar. I find I have to do this alot to any Kramer chocolate recipes because I like my chocolate desserts to be ridiculously chocolatey. I have a feeling Isa (from the other two books) may share my view there, because her recipes never skimp on the cocoa! Sarah Kramer is allergic to chocolate, so we'll let this one go. I also made the recipe in my ice cream maker, rather than the hand mixing method she employs.

So what I did was make one batch of the cupcake recipe in a lightly greased big springform pan -- I am guessing it's about 12 inches. I baked it for the time suggested for the cupcakes, and it turned out fine.

While the cake cooled, I made my ice cream, and let it get to a fairly firm, but still soft serve vibe consistency.

When the cake was totally cooled, I poured the ice cream on top of the cake, still in the spring form pan.

I popped all of that in the freezer while I made a double batch of the chocolate ganache recipe (with bittersweet cocoa camino chocolate, of course.)

After letting the ganache cool at room temperature, I spread it on top of the now cold contents of the springform pan. I finished the whole thing off with a topping of sifted icing sugar, and pressed a snowflake cookie cutter into the ganache a few times once it had firmed up, which gave the top a nice, cracked, almost brownie-like appearance. It looked very bakery-y, especially once the springform pan came off and revealed all the pretty layers! I am definitely going to be doing a gazillion variations on this. Next I want to do a pumpkin ice cream cake with chocolate ganache and a cranberry shortbread crust!

I let the whole thing cool for about an hour, and ate it when it had reached a perfect holds-together-not-melty-yet-not-too-hard ice cream cake texture. I find that with soy ice cream, it is better to err on the side of soft, because with the high water content of the tofu, too frozen can mean ice crystal central, and nobody wants that.

If you make this, and freeze it overnight or something, thawing it for a good half hour (checking on it frequently) should do the trick. My freezer makes things super frozen, though, so you may find it comes out of the freezer fine as is. The thawing time is nice for the ganache, though, regardless, so let it sit a few moments, anyway.

Here's a picture. I wish I took one right away -- this is after the whole thing had been thawed and refrozen a few times.
It was delicious, and fun to make, too!



Saturday, February 16, 2008


I finally figured out how to focus properly with my new SLR digital camera.
That means I can now take really close up pictures of tea and babies' faces.
Now I just need to learn to make them right-side-up in the blog.
Shit's about to get crazy.