Would you judge me if I told you I had ice cream for lunch yesterday? It's OK if you do, I usually would, but I'm pretty sure that by the end of this post you'll be convinced that it was an entirely acceptable thing for me to do...
My parents have been on holiday for three weeks, which means we've been looking after their dog. Who, I should point out, was at one stage my dog too, but then I abandoned her when I moved for a boy... shame on me. Anyway, I think you should meet Ciara, because she is one of my favourite people on this planet (yes, I said people, and I won't retract that).
Isn't she gorgeous?! If a little grumpy... she was waiting for a walk in that picture. In fact, she was waiting for a walk and wondering why I wouldn't share any of this ice cream with her- but really, it was her fault I was eating ice cream in the first place! You see, she gets walked three times a day- morning, noon and night. My wonderful, amazing, oh so lovely husband has been dealing with the morning walks so I can get another wee while in bed, but the lunch time and evening walks we either do together or take in turns depending on our schedules. Yesterday was my turn, as Mr E was at a conference, but the problem is that by the time I've factored in travelling home and back to work, there's only just enough time to walk her and not really enough time to make and eat lunch! Normally I would have soup in a travel mug and drink it on our walk, but somebody wasn't very prepared yesterday and was caught lunchless. Which is why, dear friends, I was found to be eating ice cream.
If it had been just any old ice cream, I promise I would have found a more nutritionally acceptable, instantly grabable lunch... but this is not just any old ice cream. This is the creamiest, richest, ice cream with the chunkiest, yummiest cookie dough throughout... it's effectively contentment served in a bowl. There's a certain ice cream brand that I love very much (but rarely can afford!) who I am certain make millions off their own cookie dough ice cream... would you consider me arrogant if I said this was better than theirs? Please don't, because it's really not my creation, it's my adaptation of two stolen recipes, so I'm really not blowing my own trumpet... well, not exactly!
The ice cream base is my favourite new discovery (I think most people will have heard of it by now in fact), and I'm concerned that it might put my much loved ice cream machine into retirement! Not only does the recipe make the kind of smooth, silky, creamy, fluffy and soft ice cream you usually see swirling out of a machine onto a cone, but it takes 5 minutes to make (plus freezing time)... and has only three ingredients! That's right, three. Just three! Love it. Thank you, Nigella Lawson, for the inspiration- you rock.
While I love that ice cream, I do find it quite rich to eat on it's own... so in my somewhat confused little mind I thought it would be less rich if you broke it up with another ingredient... namely cookie dough. OK OK, I know, cookie dough isn't exactly your 'go-to' ingredient when you want to cut through the richness of something, but it does add a bit more interest to the already heavenly bowl in front of you- and it's just so easy! If you make the quantity I outline below, then you'll have enough for mixing through the ice cream and for making a dozen cookies to boot. It just gets better, doesn't it! I have to admit, the cookies were an experiment as I've never made eggless cookies before- but now I think this will be my go to recipe! The cookies were crisp on the outside, chewy on the inside- just how I like them. Stay tuned for a flood of variations in future!
So, do I have your approval for yesterday's lunch choice? For those sceptics out there, please make this recipe and then come back and let me know if you still don't approve :)
Copycat Ben and Jerry's Cookie Dough Ice Cream
Makes about 2 litres (1.75 quarts)
Adapted from Nigella Lawson and Love and Olive Oil
For the Ice Cream:
600ml double cream
350g condensed milk
1 tblspn vanilla extract
For the Cookie Dough:350g plain flour
1 tspn salt
1/4 tspn baking soda
225g butter, softened
150g granulated sugar
130g dark brown sugar
1 tspn vanilla extract
1/3 cup milk
150g chocolate chips
1) Whisk together the double cream, condensed milk and vanilla extract in a large bowl. Put in the fridge to chill while you make the cookie dough. Ice cream: done. How easy was that?!
2) Whisk the granulated sugar, brown sugar and butter until thoroughly combined and creamy smooth.
3) Add in the milk and vanilla extract and lightly whisk again until combined.
4) Combine the flour, baking soda and salt and then gradually add this into the butter mixture, stirring all the while. You could whisk, but I always end up with flour everywhere, and I figure my arms could do with the work out!
5) When the flour is fully worked through, add in the chocolate chip and give it another stir to make sure they're evenly dispersed. Cover and chill until ready to use.
6) Remove your ice cream base from the fridge, and stir in small teaspoons of the cookie dough. I only used about half of the cookie dough here (feel free to use more) because I felt that was more than enough... and I wanted to make cookies later! If you want to do the same, preheat your oven to 180c/ 160c fan/ Gas 4/ 350f.
7) Pour the whole mix into your freezer tub and freeze for at least 6 hours (or as long as you can hold off... we may have eaten some of the unfrozen mix!).
8) To make the cookies, prepare two baking sheets with parchment paper and place 6 balls of dough on each. Lightly press the cookies down slightly, the pop the trays in the oven for 15 minutes or until golden. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
I have so many different flavour combinations I want to try with this ice cream! I think butter pecan might be next, but do you have any requests?