Oh my. It appears that we have skipped Spring entirely and moved right on to Summer down here in SoFla. It is hot, humid, and has me dreading the real months of Summer.
Luckily, I have lots of popsicle and ice cream recipes lined up to try and I know that this treat will definitely make a showing again in the months to come. [As an aside, I can NOT believe I am here writing about ice cream when, this afternoon, we made the journey to this special place that requires fasting beforehand and stretchy pants afterward. TOTALLY worth it though!]
I’ve written before (here, here, here) about the Misses love for all things mint-flavored, so I knew just reading the recipe over at Glorious Treats that they would flip for it. Flip they did! The picture above would be better, but so little was left that I had to make this one little piece work…
The recipe may seem very long and involved, but you can go the cheaty store-bought route and I am sure it will be just as fantastic. Even the from-scratch parts that I made weren’t hard, just a lengthier process.
If you enjoying Spring right now, I envy you. But, save this recipe. Trust me, you’ll need it later! :)
Mint Chip Brownie Ice Cream Squares
Yield: One 9 x 13 pan (12-16 servings)
For the Brownie Layer:
You can use any boxed mix that is supposed to fit in a 9″ x 9″ pan, or use your favorite from-scratch brownie recipe. (You will use a 9″ x 13″ pan to make the brownies though.) I used a recipe called “Brownies Williams” from Gourmet (May 1996) magazine that produces a dense, moist and not overly sweet brownie. This recipe for “Brownies Williams” is incorporated into the directions of this recipe.
2 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
2 oz. unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
For the Ice Cream Layer:
1 carton (1.5 quarts) Mint Chip Ice Cream, I used Blue Bell (duh!)
For the Chocolate Layer:
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
OR Use a good-quality hot fudge sauce (1 to 1 1/2 cups)
For the Whipped Cream Layer:
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
OR Use one 8 ounce tub of Cool Whip
For the Garnish/Toppings:
Chopped Andes Mints or mini chocolate chips
To Make the Brownie Layer:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9″ x 13″ pan with parchment paper.
2. If using a boxed mix, prepare brownies according to package, then spread batter into pan and bake for 20 – 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with some crumbs.
3. If making “Brownies Williams,” beat eggs and sugar together in the bowl of an electric mixer until the mixture is thick and pale.
4. Mixing well after each addition, beat in the chocolate, flour, a pinch of salt, and the butter. Make sure each is well combined before adding the next ingredient. Stir in the walnuts, if using.
5. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan, smoothing the top. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a tester comes out with some crumbs clinging to it.
6. Cool brownies completely in the pan on a rack.
To Make the Ice Cream Layer:
1. Allow a carton of ice cream to soften at room temperature until soft enough to spread over the cooled brownies, about 20 minutes.
2. Once the ice cream is evenly spread over brownies, place the entire pan in the freezer to allow the ice cream to re-freeze.
To Make the Chocolate Layer:
1. Heat the heavy cream in the microwave for 1 to 2 minutes until hot (but not boiling!).
2. Add chocolate chips to the hot cream and set aside (undisturbed) about 3 minutes to allow the chocolate to melt.
3. After 3 minutes, stir the chocolate until smooth and fully combined with the cream.
4. Set aside and allow to cool to about room temperature. Pour the cooled chocolate over the ice cream layer. Spread carefully to form an even layer.
OR Heat the jar of hot fudge until just warm enough to spread; pour over frozen ice cream layer and spread evenly.
5. Return pan to freezer.
To Make the Whipped Cream Layer:
1. In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip the heavy cream, sugar and vanilla together until thick and spreadable.
OR Thaw one small tub of Cool Whip to room temperature, or spreadable.
2. Spread whipped cream (or Cool Whip) over chilled chocolate layer.
Garnish the whipped cream layer as desired.
Return pan to freezer and FREEZE AT LEAST 3 HOURS before serving.
The recipe notes that this can be made ahead, and kept in the freezer (covered) up to 3 days in advance.
Source: Glorious Treats, with the brownie recipe featured in Gourmet, May 1986