Things I did last weekend:
Ate a lot of pizza. Had a delicious moscow mule. Got a haircut. Did laundry. Went grocery shopping. Played video games. Watched some of The Simpsons marathon. Baked things for future posts. Watched Peter Capaldi's debut as the new Dr. Who. Went running in the middle of a huge thunderstorm. Failed at making pavlova. Exploded blueberry sauce all over the stove. Subsequently cleaned the stove. Ate these ice cream sandwiches.
Things I learned (or re-learned) last weekend:
Moscow mules might be my favorite "classic" cocktail. I am a semi-closeted nerd. Nobody should even consider attempting pavlova or meringues when it's extra-humid. Even ugly, shrunken, chewy pavlova is delicious. Always save half your blueberries in case the first half ends up burnt and stuck to your stove. Running is more fun when you're working with flooded streets and intersections that are knee-deep in water. One day, I want a tattoo of an eggplant. Peach ice cream and snickerdoodles are a magical combination.
Snickerdoodles are one of the greatest cookies in the world. Don't argue with me. This is factual. They're a little bit doughy, tangy from the cream of tartar, and super cinnamon-y. They work just as well on their own as they do with a cup of coffee or a scoop of ice cream. They're an all-purpose cookie. And they're not TOO sweet (if you make them right, that is.) And they don't taste like sugar cookies because, well, they're not sugar cookies. And there's no vanilla, which helps. Snickerdoodles were my dad's favorite cookie, and the batch I made when I was home last converted my step-dad from a macaroon lover to a snickerdoodle fanatic. Obviously, I hail from a "long line" of snickerdoodlers. Also, I once had a cat named Snickers.
As always, click on the album art above to see Brandon’s post over at Black Porridge and have a listen to the song.
Every time I hear this song, it is stuck in my head for DAYS. Weeks, maybe. And 9 times out of 10, I have to resist the urge to yell "MILLIONS OF PEACHES! PEACHES FOR ME!" when I see peaches at the grocery store/farmer's market.
Why this iteration of peaches? Well, firstly: peaches are at their prime! We've been seeing some wonderful stone fruit here. Second: back in June, my coworker went to a conference in San Francisco. I told her she had to go to Bi-Rite Creamery (among other places). She did, and she apparently had an ice cream flavor and/or sundae that involved snickerdoodles and peaches, which she absolutely loved...and that's how I arrived at the conclusion that I needed to make an ice cream sandwich involving peach ice cream and snickerdoodles as soon as humanly possible. Well, "as soon as humanly possible" turned out to be two months later, but hey, better late than never. They were worth the wait. Eating one of these guys is almost like having a less-messy, hand-held serving of peach crisp with a scoop of ice cream.
Notes: I won't judge you if you go for the store-bought peach ice cream. It won't be quite as good, but it is a much quicker method. But you dang well better make your own snicker doodles. Oh, and in an effort to be extra peachy, I might've dosed the ice cream with a little extra peach food coloring. That explains it's neon-esque quality.
recipe, adapted slightly, from Cooks Illustrated
makes two dozen cookies
1 cup plus 2 TB granulated sugar
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
8 TB unsalted butter, at room temp
8 TB vegetable shortening
Additional ¼ cup sugar + 1 TB ground cinnamon, for rolling the cookies
- Preheat oven to 375F. Line two baking sheets with parchment.
- Combine the ¼ cup sugar and 1 TB cinnamon in a bowl. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, tartar, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, beat the butter, shortening, and sugar together at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
- Add eggs, one at a time, beating until incorporated. Scrape down sides/bottom of bowl as needed.
- Reduce speed to low, and slowly add flour mixture. Mix until combined (about 30 seconds).
- Working with 2 TB of dough at a time, roll into balls, and then roll balls in cinnamon sugar. Place 2 inches apart on baking sheet.
- Bake one sheet at a time for 10-12 minutes (rotating sheet halfway through), or until edges are set and just beginning to brown, but centers are soft and puffy. Cookies will look raw between the cracks and seem underdone.
- Let cool on sheet for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.
Peach Ice Cream
recipe adapted from Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams At Home
makes just over one quart
3/4 cup peach puree
2 cups milk (I used a combo of 2% and whole milk. I would not recommend non-fat.)
1 TB + 1 tsp cornstarch
3 TB cream cheese (softened)
1/8 tsp fine sea salt
1 ½ cups heavy cream
2/3 cup sugar
2 TB light corn syrup
1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
- Make peach puree. Halve peaches, remove pits, and place peaches cut side down in a baking dish. Bake at 350 until softened and juicy (could take anywhere from 15-40 minutes, depending on the ripeness of your peaches). Whiz peaches with ¼ cup sugar in your food processor until smooth. Strain if desired to remove bits of skin. Not necessary, though.
- Make ice cream. Mix 2 TB of milk with cornstarch in a small bowl until smooth.
- In a medium/large bowl, whisk cream cheese and salt together until smooth.
- Combine remaining milk, cream, sugar, and corn syrup in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, and boil for 4 minutes (stirring occasionally).
- Remove from heat and slowly whisk in cornstarch mixture. Bring the mixture back to a boil, stirring until slightly thickened (about 1-2 minutes).
- Remove from heat.
- Gradually whisk the hot milk mixture into the cream cheese until smooth. Whisk in the vanilla and peach puree.
- Cover bowl with plastic wrap and place in the fridge until completely chilled.
- Process in your ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions.
- Freeze until firm, then assemble your sandwiches. To make it easier to cut sandwich-sized portions, I spread my ice cream into a rectangle baking pan for freezing so I could use a biscuit cutter to cut the correct size circles later for sandwiching between cookies. You could also just use the scoop-and-squish method to assemble the sandwiches, too. Roll the sides of your sandwiches in sprinkles, almonds, coconut, chocolate chips, or whatever you desire. Or, go classic and don’t roll them at all.