Thursday, June 25, 2015

ICOTW: Strawberry Pretzel Ice Cream Pie

I originally was planning to make this pie for Father's Day at my parents' and another ice cream as well.  Then I realized this pie contained homemade ice cream and there was no reason to stress myself out, like I tend to do from time to time.  So this ice cream pie counts as the ice cream of the week for legit reasons and because I make the rules around here.  I had high hopes for it but a rushed time schedule didn't help the ice cream.  We had about 2.5 hours at home between getting home from the lake (with a stop at Matt's parents' on the way to see his Dad for Father's Day) to unload, unpack, get all 3 of us bathed, Luke down for a nap, lunch, and get this dessert finished up.  Turns out that wasn't enough time but I think I would try it again because it had good potential and was pretty easy, just needed more freezer time.

Strawberry Pretzel Ice Cream Pie
yield: 1 9 inch pie (at least 8 servings)
-2 cups mini pretzels
-1/4 cup brown sugar
-2 TB sugar
-1/4 cup nonfat dry milk
-9-10 TB butter, divided

Ice Cream:
-4 cups mini pretzels
-1 1/2 cups whole milk
-1 1/2 cups heavy cream
-1 vanilla bean
-1/4 cup brown sugar
-1/4 cup sugar

-1 lb strawberries, washed, hulled, cut into bite size pieces
-2 TB sugar
-1 tsp vanilla extract

1) First make the pretzel crunch.  Preheat the oven to 275°.   Smash the pretzels into crumbs, I used a heavy glass and a pie plate.  Add the sugars and nonfat dry milk, stirring briefly.  Melt 7 tablespoons of butter and stir into the pretzel mixture, resulting in small clumps.  Spread this on a lined baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes.  Let cool.

2) Once it has cooled, stir the pretzel crunch with 2 tablespoons of melted butter and press into a 9 inch pie pan.  If it's not sticking well enough melt the last tablespoon of butter and add it.  Put in the freezer to chill thoroughly. (I did through this step days in advance.)

3) Toast the 4 cups of pretzels on a baking sheet in a 300° oven for 15 minutes.  Let cool.  In a saucepan, combine the milk, cream, vanilla bean and sugars over medium-high heat until the sugars have fully dissolved and small bubbles begin to form.  Stir in the toasted pretzels, cover, and remove from heat.  Let steep for 8 minutes and then strain through a sieve, discarding the pretzels and vanilla bean.  Chill thoroughly (this is important!).

4) Churn the ice cream mixture in an ice cream maker, according to the instructions (ours takes about 30 minutes, since we didn't thoroughly freeze after step #3, we ended up running an extension cord to the basement deep freeze and having it churn in the deep freeze.  My husband is a genius.)  Spread the churned and chilled ice cream into an even layer in the pretzel crust.  Chill. (Again, very important!)

5) For the topping, combine the strawberries with the sugar and vanilla and allow to macerate at least 15 minutes.  Top the frozen ice cream pie with the strawberries and freeze.

My Thoughts
By the time we served this at my parents it had about 2 full hours in the deep freeze but that wasn't quite enough.  Do not underestimate how much time you'll need to freeze the ice cream!  Next time I will definitely spread this out a little more, probably giving the ice cream at least overnight in the freezer before serving.  The pretzel crust with strawberries and (basically) melted cream was still good, just not really what we were going for.  But the crust was delicious (I taste tested).  And the ice cream was good (I taste tested).  And you usually can't go wrong with summer strawberries. 

Source: Strawberry Pretzel Ice Cream Pie

In the summer I aim to make a different homemade ice cream each week and report back here, good or bad!  I call it "Ice Cream of the Week".  You can follow the "ICOTW" tag to see them all chronologically or go to my "Recipes" page and scroll down to the "Ice Cream/Frozen Things" section for my favorites!

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