Churro Ice Cream Sandwiches
You know what July means? National Ice Cream month! Wahoo! In honor of it being the best celebrated food month, I am sharing these bad boys with you all. A fabulous start to several excellent ice cream flavors coming your way this month.
You know those ideas that sound excellent in your head, but when you follow through, they don't come out quite like you thought they would? Yeah, that totally happened to me with these churro ice cream sandwiches. The process went just fine, but the execution is where things started to go wrong. Mostly because I rushed the final stage. And when you are in a rush, that is always when the mistakes and frustration start to happen. I made these sandwiches as a treat for my kids final day of school this year. They had a short day since it was a snow-day make up, so therefore, I had less time than I thought I would. I started later than I should have (due to cleaning and laundry.. ugh), so the churros didn't have quite enough time to cool. I had wanted to photograph everything before the kids came home. But... I made the mistake of not letting the churros cool long enough. So, when I put a scoop of ice cream on each churro and sandwiched them together, instant melting started to happen. Normally I'll just roll with it, a little messy photograph was never a bad thing. But this wasn't just messy, this was like a lava flow going on. The churro tops kept sliding off, ice cream was every where. Seriously. Then I realized that I had wanted to drizzle some chocolate over the tops because churros and chocolate! I rushed the chocolate melting process and ended up getting chocolate goo instead of nice silky chocolate. (You can actually see one of those chocolate results in the photo.) So, to make a long story shorter, I ended up getting so frustrated that I said "screw it" and wrapped the mess in plastic wrap and threw them into the freezer (hence the lumpy looking ice cream). The kids came home and got to eat some fresh ones, but I decided not to attempt photographing them again until the next day. Turns out, we ate so many I barely had any left to photograph! Very disappointing.
Except the taste. The sandwiches themselves, despite the assembly disaster, were anything but disappointing. They were exactly what I had hoped for. You get your delicious cinnamon-sugar dipped churro with a big scoop of vanilla or chocolate ice cream sandwiched in between. What can go wrong with that flavor combination?
These do take a little time. So, in other words, don't be like me. Plan ahead and set enough time aside to make sure the process goes smoothly. And don't chose the wrong pastry tip like I did, then have everything get jammed up and have to scrape out all the batter from the pastry bag just so you can change out the star tip. Yeah, it was totally one of those days. These make a great special treat for the summer months. For long term storage, assemble each sandwich, individually wrap, then store in a zip lock bag for safe keeping in the freezer. A cool, satisfying treat is just a grab away.
Churro Ice Cream Sandwiches
Yield: about 8-10 sandwiches
- 1 cup plus 4 teaspoons granulated sugar, divided
- 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 4 teaspoons kosher salt
- 8 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 7 large eggs
- 4 cups canola oil (for frying)
- vanilla ice cream, chocolate ice cream
Have ready two baking sheets lined with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
To make the churros, combine 1 cup of the sugar with the cinnamon in a pie dish and whisk to combine. Set aside. In a medium saucepan, combine the milk, vanilla extract salt, butter and 4 teaspoons of sugar. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the flour into the pan with the milk and stir well with a wooden spoon until the flour is fully incorporated, about 1-2 minutes. Remove from the heat and transfer the mixture to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Let cool in the bowl for 5 minutes then turn on to medium speed. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing each until fully incorporated before adding the next.
Fit a large pastry bag with a large star tip. Fill the pastry bag with the batter. Pipe the batter onto the prepared baking sheets into tight circles about 3 inches in diameter. Continue until all the batter is gone. Place the baking sheet with the rounds in the freezer until firm, at least 1 hour.
Once the batter rounds have chilled, pour the oil to a heavy-bottomed pot, fitted with a candy thermometer and heat to 350ºF. Have ready a baking sheet lined with paper towels. Carefully place the rounds into the hot oil, making sure to not over crowd them. They will sink at first, then slowly float. Let cook, turning once with tongs, until golden brown, about 2-3 minutes per side. Remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and transfer to the prepared baking sheet. Repeat process until all the rounds are fried. Coat each round in the cinnamon sugar mixture while each batch is frying. Let the rounds cool completely.
To serve, pair up similar sized rounds. Place a scoop of ice cream on each half sandwich. Place the other half of the sandwich on top. Serve immediately or wrap in plastic wrap and freeze.