active time:45 minutes
total time:3 hours and 45 minutes
stakes:16 (2 x 3 inch bars)
Yes, the bars will need to pop in the freezer for a few hours, but these cold, creamy, crunchy, sweet treats full of warm weather are worth their 100 percent satiation for a little belated. Furthermore, if, like me, you have fond memories of Dairy Queen’s soft serve (“a touch with chocolate sauce, please”) — or really anything DQ-related or [insert name of your forever fave ice cream spot]These special bars will give you all the nostalgic feeling, but in a slightly more adult package.
Deli Desert recipe, a great mix of two different plates of Dairy Queen – Deli, vanilla ice cream on a stick dipped in chocolate; And Buster, and Dilly plus peanuts and fudge swirls—inspired our Salted Peanut Ice Cream Bars topped with ganache. I learned of this DQ bar mix from a friend who cut the recipe from her local Midwest newspaper, and was instantly fascinated by both its eccentric name (I mean, who wouldn’t want to make a dessert with the word “deli” in?) and how easy it was to implement.
In my version, store-bought diluted vanilla ice cream is spread on an easy, unbaked, slightly salty pretzel crust. The original recipe called for an Oreo cookie crumb crust, but these pretzels add a salty, crunchy dimension to these not-to-miss bars; It helps take off the sweetness of ice cream and ganache – which your adult figure will likely appreciate. Then you press the roasted and salted peanuts into ice cream (as in the original recipe), pour a soft, slightly chewy ganache on top of that (the ganache is a bit more high on the original chocolate layer/evaporated milk), and finish with a sprinkle of crushed biscuits and more peanuts.
After a few hours in the freezer, the result is a dessert plate that reads “A fresh summertime treat and ready for a crowd.”
Here are some tips for assembling ice cream bars for the perfect dessert every time.
Making Pretzel Crust 101: A food processor is the best tool for grinding pastries, but a plastic zip-top bag and rolling pin will do the trick in no time. When grinding, your goal is a mixture of small pretzel bits and a salty dust. You don’t want all the dust, as the pieces add nice texture and help with the structure of the crust. After stirring in the butter, sugar, and salt, you’ll know the mixture is well done when you squeeze a little in your hand and hold together. Press the crust firmly and evenly into your prepared pan, so it’s firm and not only will it stay firm and crunchy when covered with ice cream, but once frozen, it slices well without cracking or crumbling. And if the chocolate cake crust is too fast for you, you can use that crust by increasing the ingredient amounts by one and a half.
Simplify the assembly of bars: To reduce downtime when assembling the bars, follow this schedule: When you’re done making the crust and putting it in the freezer, take the ice cream out of the freezer to soften it.
The crust benefits from 20 to 30 minutes of rest in the freezer so that it holds together and is less likely to fall apart when spread with ice cream. Fortunately, the ice cream softens to a nice texture around the same time. This timing may vary slightly depending on the temperature of your kitchen, but I’m confident that by the time the ice cream is ready to spread, your pretzel crust will be ready to pick up.
Next, you’ll press the peanuts into the ice cream and return the pan to the freezer for another 30 minutes (so the soft ice cream has a chance to firm up again before it gets covered in ganache). Ganache—or even sooner, while waiting for the crust to cool and soft ice cream—also takes 20-30 minutes to reach room temperature.
Thus, in an ideal world for making ice cream bars, the ganache would be cold enough to be poured over the ice cream about the same time the ice cream is re-glazed enough that spreading the ganache is a foolproof task.
How to quickly bring ganache to room temperature: To further simplify assembling these bars, stop melting the chocolate, whether it’s on the stovetop or in the microwave, where you can still see chunks of solid chocolate in the mix. Fry the pieces in the ganache, away from the heat, until they are melted and soft. Melting these small pieces left over the heat will help lower the temperature of the melted chocolate. The ganache will need to cool more on the counter, but you’ll have a head start on getting to room temperature.
Following these tips will not only increase your ice cream game, delighting your family and friends, but will also allow you to put the bars in their hands as quickly as possible; That is why they will love you forever.
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moving forward: The crust can be wrapped in plastic wrap and frozen for up to 3 days.
storage: The bars can be frozen in a zip-top bag for up to two weeks.
For crust and filling
- 1 cup (8 ounces/226 grams) melted unsalted butter, plus more at room temperature for greasing skillet
- 2 1/2 cups (8 ounces/226 grams) finely ground puff pastry (about 4 1/2 cups wholemeal puff pastry, ground in a food processor or ground in a zip-top bag with a rolling pin; see note
- 6 tablespoons (75 grams) light brown sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon fine salt
- 1 1/2 quarts (27 1/2 ounces / 783 grams) store-bought vanilla ice cream
- 9 ounces (255 grams) semisweet chocolate or chopped chocolate chips
- 1 cup (240 ml) heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
- 2 cups (about 9 ounces/254 grams) roasted and salted peanuts, coarsely chopped
- About 1 tablespoon of each finely chopped peanuts and crackers, for sprinkling
Making the crust: Grease the bottom of a 9″ x 13″ x 2″ skillet with softened butter. In a large bowl, combine the crushed biscuits, melted butter, sugar, and salt and mix with a flexible spoon (or your hands) until the butter and sugar are completely combined and the mixture has the consistency of wet sand. Scrape it into the prepared pan and tap the bottom of the pan using your hands or the back of a dry measuring cup to form a firm, flat layer. Freeze for 30 minutes.
Make the ganache: In a medium heatproof bowl, set over a saucepan of simmering water (make sure the bottom of the bowl is not touching the water), mix the chocolate with the heavy cream and corn syrup and warm until about three-quarters of the chocolate melts, about 5 minutes, with Stir occasionally with a flexible spatula. Remove from heat and stir until chocolate is completely melted. (Alternatively, you can microwave chocolate, heavy cream, and corn syrup on high in a microwave-safe bowl, in 30-second bursts, for about 90 seconds, stirring between bursts, until a thick, glossy sauce forms.) Cool completely.
About 20 minutes before you are ready to assemble, transfer the ice cream to the counter to soften it. Using an offset spatula or tablespoon, spread the soft ice cream evenly over the frozen pretzel crust, then sprinkle with the peanuts, pressing them gently into the ice cream.
Transfer to the freezer until firm, about 30 minutes (even if the ganache has cooled completely, it’s a good idea to let the ice cream and peanuts harden in the freezer, about 20 minutes, before adding the ganache).
Pour the ganache over the peanuts and spread evenly with a spoon or the back of a tablespoon until smooth. Sprinkle with finely chopped peanuts and crushed pretzels and return to freezer for at least 3 hours, preferably overnight.
Using a sharp chef’s knife, cut the bars into 16 or 24 squares, being careful not to smash the bottom of the pan. Run the knife under hot water and dry it after each slice. Use an offset spatula to lift the bars from the pan.
Note: the finely ground pastry should be a mixture of small crumbs, as well as dusty bits – you want to avoid upright dust.
Per serving (one 2 x 3 inch slice)
Calories: 501 Total Fat: 35 g; saturated fat: 18 g; Cholesterol: mg. Sodium: 72 mg; carbohydrates: 43 g; Dietary fiber: 3 g; sugar: 25 g; Protein: 8 grams
This analysis is an estimate based on the ingredients available and this preparation. It should not replace the advice of a dietician or dietician.
From cookbook author Jesse Sheehan.
Tested by Susie Leonard; Email questions to [email protected].
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