Thursday, January 27, 2011

Eat: Surplus Thin Mint Ice Cream Pie with Minty Whipped Cream

I never rushed a sorority.  The thought of a gang of pajama-clad girls staying up late into the night to systematically scrutinize my small talk, my wardrobe my reputation-- it was more than I could manage at the time. But I sometimes regret missing out on all of the sisterly bonding, so when I found out that in Daisy Girl Scouts Big E could have all the trappings of sorority life --songs about friendship, a special pin, appliqued letters (well,  daisy petals actually)-- and with none of the ugliness of rush week and pledging, I enthusiastically signed her up. 

And then I discovered the catch. It's the cookies.  I do love Girl Scout cookies, but come next month we will own more than even I can manage.  So when I found a box of last year's Thin Mints still in the freezer, I got inventive in advance of the coming onslaught.

This ice cream pie maintains the choco-minty deliciousness of the cookies but fancies them up a bit.  It is also pretty easy (though it requires some freezing time), and its chocolate sauce and minty whipped cream are great for non-pie use, as well.

Surplus Thin Mint Ice Cream Pie with Minty Whipped Cream

for the pie:
1 12 oz. bag of semisweet chocolate chip
1 cup of heavy cream
1 teaspoon of insant coffee crystals, crushed to a powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 store-bought chocolate cookie crumb pie crust
Approximately 20 Thin Mints, 10 of them crushed
 1 pint of chocolate ice cream
1 pint of mint chocolate chip ice cream

for the whipped cream

1 cup of chilled heavy cream
1 tablespoon of sugar
1/2 teaspoon of peppermint extract

  • First prepare the chocolate sauce.  In a small saucepan, heat one cup of cream until simmering. Remove from the heat and quickly whisk in the chocolate chips, coffee crystals and vanilla extract.  Set it aside and allow it to cool.

  • Meanwhile, soften the chocolate ice cream until it is soft and spreadable.  I used the microwave, working at 15 second intervals until it was soft enough to spread smoothly into the pie shell without cracking it.

  • Once you've filled the pie crust with chocolate ice cream, cover it with plastic wrap and freeze it for about 30 minutes.  To prevent ice crystals from forming, gently press the plastic wrap onto the surface of the ice cream.

  • After the ice cream has firmed up, evenly sprinkle the crushed Thin Mints over the surface, then drizzle about 1/3 of the chocolate sauce over the top of the pie, until it is covered.  Store the remaining sauce by putting the cover on the pan and putting it straight into the refrigerator; this will save you time when you re-heat.

  • Place even scoops of the mint chocolate chip ice cream around the edge of the pie, then place whole Thin Mints between the scoops.  Rewrap the pie in plastic wrap and return to the freezer for at least two hours.

  • When you are just about ready to serve the pie, take it out of the freezer and let it sit while you re-heat the remaining sauce over low heat, stirring frequently.  Remove it from the heat when it is warm but not hot.

  • Once the sauce is ready, make the whipped cream by pouring all of the ingredients in a bowl and whipping with a hand mixer or stand mixer until fluffy.  The cream should be stiff enough to hold a peak.

  • Slice the pie and serve with whipped cream and chocolate sauce.  A tip: Immediately before slicing, run hot water over your knife and then dry it off; this warms the metal and makes for an easier cut.

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