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Ice Cream Cake

Ice Cream Cake Recipe | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

As you may know by now, I love meringue. I especially like the effect of spiking it into a Phillis Diller-esque topping. It works on cakes, pies, cheesecake and ice cream cake.

Meringue is as light as air, playful, yet sophisticated and most importantly gives you an opportunity to whip out the blow torch. Unless you are a hardcore meringue fan, you will want to pair it with something. Lemon is classic, and something sour makes sense, since the white pillowy topping is super sweet, but you can go with something a touch savory too.

I made a Honey Saffron Chocolate Chip ice cream and then sweetened the meringue topping with honey and vanilla bean. There is actually NO SUGAR in this dessert. Okay, I know honey is a type of sugar, but I’m talking about the refined, granulated cane/beet sugar. The honey flavor is mellow and delicate with just a subtle hint of saffron in the ice cream. I didn’t tell my family what the flavors were before they dove in. Being pretty will get them to try it, but the flavor will clean the plate. They loved it.

Slice of Ice Cream Cake | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François
Saffron Threads | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Have you used saffron?

Crocus_sativus_-_Köhler–s_Medizinal-Pflanzen-194

The red styles and stigmas picked from the crocus flower are called threads, which is how people refer to saffron. These threads are very expensive, so you only use a small amount. The flavor is unlike anything else, so I can’t think of a perfect substitution, but annatto and turmeric will get you pretty close, in color at least. It is most commonly used in savory foods, like Paella in Spain. The color is red when it is dry, but when you mix it with the cream, it will tint the liquid yellow. If you’ve never used it, I think you will love it, but feel free to scent your ice cream with other spices if you prefer.

Saffron Threads in Cream | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

How to Make Honey Saffron Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

You will find the full recipe at the bottom of this post.

Heat the cream, half and half, honey, salt, saffron threads and vanilla bean until the mixture comes to a simmer. Remove from heat and allow to sit for about 15 minutes to make sure the saffron is soft and releasing it’s color and flavor. Stir well and then transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until chilled.

Once it is cold, you can freeze in your machine (here are some of my favorite ice cream machines) as directed. Once the ice cream is set to the point of looking like soft serve, add the chocolate pieces.

Chilled Ice Cream Cake | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Put the ice cream in your Lekue pan and allow to chill for several hours, overnight is best to make sure it is hard enough to unmold. If you don’t have a springform pan to use, you can use an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 loaf pan, lined with parchment paper to freeze the ice cream in the right shape.

Ice Cream Cake Recipe | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

How to Make Meringue Whipped Topping

Heat the egg whites and honey in the bowl of your stand mixer, over a double boiler, until the mixture is hot and thin when you lift the rubber spatula from the mixture.

Place it on the stand mixer and beat with the whip attachment until it is fluffy. Add the salt and vanilla and continue beating until it holds stiff peaks. It also has to cool to room temperature or you run the risk of melting the ice cream when you put it on.

Remove the cake from the springform pan.

Ice Cream Cake Topped With Meringue | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Cover the cake with the meringue. Create peaks in the meringue. I do this technique in my Craftsy cheesecake class. If you have signed up for that class you’ll find this in the last lesson.

After you cover the cake, freeze it again for at least 30 minutes, before you torch it.

Ice Cream Cake Recipe | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

You don’t have to torch the ice cream cake, since it is so beautiful in its pure white form. However, and it is a BIG however, using a Blow Torch is one of life’s great joys. My friend, Barb, who was a little shy of the torch, recently got one and is now posting all of her toasted creations on Facebook, always followed by the word “WOOT!” Not only is it great fun, but I also really like what it does to the flavor of the meringue. It gives it dimension and contrast that it otherwise wouldn’t have. But, do as you like.

Slice of Ice Cream Cake | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Obviously you will store this in the freezer and it can be done a day in advance. Slice off a piece to serve.

Ice Cream Cake Recipe | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

One of the best things about the Lékué springform pans is that they come with a beautiful ceramic base, so you can serve right on them.

Ice Cream Cake with Meringue | ZoeBakes by Zoe Francois

Ice Cream Cake (Baked Alaska Style)

The honey flavor is mellow and delicate with just a subtle hint of saffron in the ice cream. My family loved this recipe and I hope you do too! My ice cream inspiration came from The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz.
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Course: Desserts

Ingredients

Honey Saffron Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup half and half
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • Pinch salt
  • 1 1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
  • 1/2 tsp 1/2 teaspoon Saffron threads
  • 6 oz finely chopped milk chocolate It doesn't freeze as hard as bittersweet, so I like it for ice cream, but either will do nicely

Honey Meringue Topping

Instructions

Honey Saffron Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

  • Heat the cream, half and half, honey, salt, saffron threads and vanilla bean until the mixture comes to a simmer. Remove from heat and allow to sit for about 15 minutes to make sure the saffron is soft and releasing it's color and flavor. Stir well and then transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until chilled.
  • Once it is cold, you can freeze in your ice cream machine as directed. Once the ice cream is set to the point of looking like soft serve, add the chocolate pieces.
  • Put the ice cream in your Lekue pan and allow to chill for several hours, overnight is best to make sure it is hard enough to unmold. If you don't have a springform pan to use, you can use an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 loaf pan, lined with parchment paper to freeze the ice cream in the right shape.

Honey Meringue Topping

  • Heat the egg whites and honey in the bowl of your stand mixer, over a double boiler, until the mixture is hot and thin when you lift the rubber spatula from the mixture.
  • Place it on the stand mixer and beat with the whip attachment until it is fluffy. Add the salt and vanilla and continue beating until it holds stiff peaks. It also has to cool to room temperature or you run the risk of melting the ice cream when you put it on.
  • Remove the cake from the springform pan. Cover the cake with the meringue. Create peaks in the meringue. I do this technique in my Craftsy cheesecake class. If you have signed up for that class you'll find this in the last lesson.
  • After you cover the cake, freeze it again for at least 30 minutes, before you torch it. You don't have to torch the ice cream cake, since it is so beautiful in its pure white form. However, using a Blow Torch is one of life's great joys. Not only is it great fun, but I also really like what it does to the flavor of the meringue. It gives it dimension and contrast that it otherwise wouldn't have.
  • Store this in the freezer and it can be done a day in advance. Slice off a piece to serve. One of the best things about the Lékué springform pans is that they come with a beautiful ceramic base, so you can serve right on them.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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32 thoughts to “Ice Cream Cake”

      1. I just looked at the link to the torch—whoa! That’s a great price for one. Is there any reason a baked alaska couldn’t be finished this way or does that meringue require the oven? Yum!

        1. Hey Barb,

          This is a baked Alaska, so torch away! Or you can pour booze over it and light the whole thing on fire!

          Cheers, Zoë

  1. I love baked Alaska, it was fun to make in pastry school!! Thank you for the giveaway and I really enjoy your blog and recipes!!

  2. How BEAUTIFUL! I love that the Lékué pan has a ceramic base, too. I think I might have to gift a few! And that torch is affordable! I have been wanting one ever since my S’mores baking phase. (I am signed up for your newsletter.)

    1. Hi Stephanie,

      Me too, love the ceramic base. It has always bugged me that you have to remove the bottom of the springform, because they aren’t pretty. This is such a smart design.

      Enjoy! Zoë

  3. This is lovely!!! I’m obsessed with ice cream cakes right now! Thanks very much for the beautiful recipe!

  4. This is such a beautiful dessert…im definitely trying it once the weather warms up here in WI.

  5. Oh my!! I’m so glad I came across this post, this looks absolutely divine!! I adore saffron (unfortunately for my wallet) and I think might just have to splash out and buy some more to attempt this beauty. Thank you Zoë !!

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