Today is July 4th. There are many things going through my mind: I miss America (more than I expected to). I miss San Francisco. I miss my friends. Craving some smoked bbq ribs right about now. With whom can I celebrate here. How do I celebrate this year. Where did this recent obsession with Peanut Butter + Jelly come from. It's 900 degrees. I want an Ice Cream Sandwich. PEANUT BUTTER + JELLY ICE CREAM SANDWICH. Breakfast style.
That's how it came to be. And that's what happened.
Breakfast is my favourite meal of the day. Also a true believer that one can in fact have breakfast foods for breakfast, lunch and dinner. But it doesn't get quite as American as Peanut Butter + Jelly (thank you freshman year roommate for that ritz-cracker topped introduction). And don't even get me started on Ice Cream sandwiches. Combining the two was the only logical next step. Duh.
I love to indulge, don't get me wrong. But I also love the challenge of making something traditionally heavy, into its lighter, healthier counterpart. For all those other times I'm not quite looking to go all out. I can't say this enough, but it's all about balance, in everything you live. Yes Breakfast Ice Cream Sandwich sounds like an oxymoron. Yes it can exist as one, healthy, balanced meal. Yes these are absolutely mouth-wateringly delicious. No they are not bad for you, at all. I know it's hard to believe. Just trust me.
Bring these, serve these, hey, make an Ice Cream Sandwich self-service bar out of these. Guarantee you'll be the party favourite. So happy 4th July to all my favourite Americans. And to the rest of you, do you need an excuse to make these? I mean, really...
Breakfast PB+J Ice Cream Sandwiches
nibs etc. original recipe. Makes 4-5 (depending on size)
PB Ice Cream:
2 (frozen) Bananas
2 tbsp Crunchy Peanut Butter
Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies:
1/2 cup Ground Almonds
1/4 cup Rolled Oats
1/4 cup Coconut
3/4 tsp Baking Soda
Pinch of Salt
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1 tbsp Olive Oil
1 tbsp Maple Syrup
1 tbsp Raisins
1 (heaped) tbsp Dark Chocolate (68% and up)
Berry Jelly Compote:
3/4 cup Frozen Blue + Black Berries
1 tbsp Maple Syrup
1 tsp Grated Lemon Zest (from about a quarter lemon)
4 Fresh Strawberries
1 (heaped) tbsp Salted Peanuts
Ice Cream: the night before, blend your banana and peanut butter until smooth and creamy. Pour into a cling film/parchment paper lined rectangular/circular container, ensuring it is big/small enough for ice cream to come about 1.5cm (about half an inch) up the sides, (I did not have the perfect sized container unfortunately, so in case you don't either, use parchment paper, staple the corners to form your make-shift rectangular container, and place a heavy flat-sided item (ex. frozen butter?) to prevent the paper from falling and the ice cream from spilling out. Line the top with cling film, and freeze over night. Before doing anything else the following morning, remove from your container, peel off cling film and using a cookie cutter (the same you will later use to shape your cookies, mine was about 4cm in diameter), cut as many rounds as possible, and then place on a tray back in the freezer until needed.
Cookies: place all the dry ingredients into a bowl and mix. Break the egg into a well in the centre of the dry ingredients, along with the maple syrup and olive oil, and mix everything until well combined. Roughly chop your dark chocolate and raisins, add to the batter and stir to evenly distribute. Onto a lined baking tray, using your cookie cutter, press dough into the mould making it about 1cm (about 1/2 inch) in height. Should yield 8-9 cookies. Place in the freezer (for 5-7). In the meantime...
Turn your oven to 160*C Fan/180*C/325 F.
Berry Jelly Compote: into a saucepan on medium heat, toss in your frozen berries, lemon zest and maple syrup. Allow to very gently simmer and reduce for about 10 minutes, swirling the pan to stir, to avoid breaking the berries with a spoon. Cut the strawberries into small, blueberry sized cubes, and set aside.
Cookies, contd.: When heated, remove cookies from the freezer and bake for 10 minutes (rotating half way through). When ready (should be slightly golden at the edges, still a little soft to the touch), remove from the oven, allow to cool for 2-3 minutes on your baking tray, before cooling further on a metal rack.
Berry Jelly contd.: once reduced and thickened, remove from the heat and pour over the fresh strawberries, tossing together gently. Set aside.
Toasted Peanuts: roughly chop your peanuts and lightly toast in a pan until lightly golden brown. Set aside.
Assembly: Take your slightly cooled cookies, pairing them according to size. Remove your ice cream cylinders from the freezer. Take your first round of PB ice cream, roll the edges into the bowl of peanuts to lightly coat, place flat onto your chosen oatmeal chocolate chip cookie, on dollop your desired quantity of Berry jelly, and top with another cookie. TA - DA. Breakfast PB + J Ice Cream Sandwich made.
Repeat until you've made as many as you want/all ingredients used.
Enjoy. 100% guilt free.
Switch up your Jelly flavours with any seasonal/favourite fruit: apricot/nectarine/peach jelly - I'd always recommend mixing a little fresh fruit into your compote.
Spice up your compote: throw in a little cinnamon, fresh basil, thyme, cardamom.
Substitute your favourite cookies for the sandwiches.
Or simply, as is. (Sure, you can use store bought substitutes. But where's the fun in that?)
And because I just couldn't stop drooling over these colours...