These ice cream sandwiches are delicious.  My son Greg asks for them often – and since it is a little work (not crazy work) to make the ice cream, I often blow his request off.  But he was very happy last night.  He turned to me… gave a quiet groan of delight, looked me in the eyes and simply thanked me.  My dad who really only likes Haagen Daaz choc choc chip also loves these little sandwiches.  He seemed surprised that he liked them so much – especially given the milk chocolate title.  But  the addition of bittersweet chocolate and malt really make the ice cream special and not too sweet.  The cookies are extra delicious too.  A little espresso deepens the flavor and I happen to love the texture of the mini chips.  And they are very easy to make.  My husband Rob can’t eat/drink milk (sadly) but is very content with these brownie-like cookies alone.  I am too!  I’ve also made the sandwiches with chocolate sorbet which he truly appreciates.  This recipe originated from Claudia Fleming – the former pastry chef of Gramercy Tavern.  The cookbook is lovely.  She suggests adding dried cherries to the cookies which I did (only to a quarter of the batter because my family would not be happy).  And they too were yummy.  Oh and by the way, you can also crumble the cookies and mix them into the ice cream which is also verrry good!

chocolate brownie cookies (barely adapted from The Last Course by Claudia Fleming):

1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 large eggs, room temp
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 tablespoon brewed espresso
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
5 oz extra bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
3/4 cup mini chips
toasted nuts or dried cherries (optional…to taste)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt in a small bowl and set aside.

With whisk attachment, beat the eggs for a few seconds then add the sugar, espresso and vanilla.  Beat until this turns thick.  It should take about 15 minutes on high speed.

In the meantime, over a pot of barely simmering water (or double boiler) – melt chocolates and butter.  You only need about an inch of water in the saucepan, bring it to a boil, and reduce to simmer.  Place a metal bowl on top of the saucepan making sure that the water does not touch the bowl of chocolate.  Once melted, remove from heat.  Do not cook the mixture, just melt it.

Remove the thick egg batter from the mixer and gently fold in the melted chocolates and butter.  Fold about half way – you should still see streaks – and then fold in the flour mixture and mini chips.  Fold all until just incorporated.  (Add dried cherries or chopped nuts if desired.)

If batter seems runny at this point, let it sit for about 5 minutes.  If thick, you are good to go.  Drop by rounded teaspoons onto parchment lined baking sheets and bake until puffed and cracked about 8-9 minutes – you can rotate the pans mid-way.  Try not to over cook these cookies…otherwise they will dry out.

Cool and enjoy!  If you plan to make ice cream sandwiches with these (either with the malted ice cream or store bought ice cream), I find it is easier to handle the cookies if you freeze them first.  This prevents them from breakage when trying to squish the cookies and ice cream together when making the sandwiches.

milk chocolate malted ice cream (adapted from The Last Course by Claudia Fleming):
3 cups milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
12 large egg yolks
3 oz milk chocolate, chopped
1 oz extra-bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 1/4 cups chocolate Ovaltine mix
1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon salt to taste

In a medium saucepan mix together the milk, heavy cream and 1/4 cup sugar.  Heat the mixture over medium heat and bring to a simmer.  Watch it carefully – you don’t want it to boil.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and remaining sugar (1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons).  Chop the milk and bitter chocolates and set aside in a large bowl.

Now you will “temper” the eggs which means warming them slowly so that they do not turn into scrambled eggs!  With a ladle, spoon a small amount of hot cream/milk into the eggs.  Continue slowly ladle by ladle and constantly whisking the eggs while you do this.  Keep going until you’ve incorporated about 3/4’s of the hot milk into the eggs.

Pour the warm egg and milk/cream mixture into the remaining cream and milk on the stove.  Over low heat, mix the custard constantly with a wooden spoon keep the mixture moving at all times.  The custard should thicken so that it coats the back of the wooden spoon.  It should take about 7 minutes.  Do not boil.  Cook slowly and carefully.

Immediately pour custard over the chopped chocolates.  Mix and stir until the chocolate is melted and smooth.  Add the Ovaltine and stir until combined.  Strain through a fine sieve and into a container or bowl.  Cover and chill in refrigerator preferably overnight but for at least 4 hours.

Freeze in your ice cream maker and enjoy!!

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