Frozen Cupcake Ice Cream Pie
Y3, Week Six: Yet Another Heat Wave Pie
Seriously, why they stick national ice cream month in the middle of a heat wave every year is beyond me. I mean, I get it. It’s very hot, ice cream is very cold, yay! But my only really good light source is outside and at 100° I’ve got about five minutes to take pictures before I just have a pan filled with warm cream and soggy cookie crust. After frantically running in and out of my house with benches and cameras and ice cream pie, my neighbors now officially think I’m a crazy person. Don’t even get me started on transporting this baby to a friend’s house frozen-ness intact, I think I had to promise my first-born to some pagan deity, but I’m not completely sure.
Okay, I’m done ranting, onto the pie. When I was a kid my mom, the total gourmand, developed this passion bordering on obsession with Hostess Cupcakes. She’d buy the ginormous boxes of 48 individually wrapped cakes and eat at least one a day. Needless to say, we kids thought this was the best thing ever, and Mom took up running shortly thereafter.
And although I haven’t had a Hostess product in many years (the half-life freaks me out), I still have a fondness for at least the way I remember them tasting and I thought it might be fun to “redo” the classic. I brought back the semifreddo from last year, as I thought the whipped mousse nature of it could simulate the frothy, heaven-knows-what-but-damn-it’s-tasty, filling of the cupcakes. Plus there’s the bonus of not needing an ice cream maker.
Tip: Don’t try to wrap or cover the finished pie with anything. The fudge layer on top is fantastic, in no small part because it doesn’t ever freeze solid, but it has one minor issue of preferring to stick to just about anything that comes into contact with it that isn’t the pie. I just kept the pie in my freezer uncovered for a week and a half, it was fine. When I did transport it covered once, well, there was a good deal of angst and cursing. Please do not let that stop you from making this pie and reliving a brief and fattening, but wonderfully sugar-filled part of my childhood. Stay cool everyone.
FROZEN CUPCAKE ICE CREAM PIE
Note: This recipe calls for a deep dish pie pan, at least 2 1/2″ deep. If you are using a regular pan, cut ingredients by approximately 50% or drop out a layer of the semifreddo.
Yellow Cake (optional)
You will need about 3 cupcakes worth of cubed yellow cake (use 1/4 cup scoop to measure out the cupcakes). You can buy the cake, or make it yourself using your favorite recipe (here’s a recipe if you don’t have one already). You can make a half batch, and if you have no use for the other cupcakes immediately, they freeze beautifully for up to three months when placed in a heavy-duty freezer bag or wrapped tightly in plastic then foil.
Chocolate Wafer Crust
2 cups chocolate wafer cookie crumbs
1 stick butter
1/3 cup sugar
Heat oven to 350°.
Place wafer cookies in a plastic zip bag and work out your aggressions with a rolling-pin until cookies have been reduced to fine crumbs, or pulverize in a food processor. Melt the butter and mix thoroughly with 2 cups of crumbs, and sugar. Press firmly into the bottom and sides of a greased 9″ pie pan. Place in the freezer for 15 minutes. Bake at 350° for 10 min. Remove from oven; let cool completely, then place in the freezer.
1 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk
5 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 tbsp butter
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine milk, chocolate, and butter. Stir until chocolate is completely melted, remove from heat and cool to room temperature.
Frangelico Semifreddo Mousse
3 eggs, separated and room temperature
rounded 1/4 cup sugar, for the egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar, for the whites
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream, cold
1 tbsp Frangelico
3 tbsp powdered sugar
Place the egg yolks and 1/4 cup sugar in a medium bowl and with a hand mixer or stand mixer, beat for 3-5 minutes until thickened and pale yellow in color. Set aside. Beat cream, Frangelico, and powdered sugar with a hand mixer until the whipped cream is thickened to a frosting-like consistency. Set aside. Place the egg whites and cream of tartar in a bowl and beat with a hand mixer until frothy, about 1 minute. Continue beating while gradually adding 1/3 cup of sugar until the whites have become glossy and hold stiff peaks. Set aside.
Gently fold 1/3 of the whites into the yolk mixture to loosen it up. Fold in the remaining whites. Next gently fold in the whipped cream. In a separate bowl, fold 1/3 of the mousse mixture in with the vanilla cake pieces. Gently spoon this mixture into cold pie shell. Carefully spread the remaining mousse on top of the cubed cake, filling the pie shell. Freeze for one hour.
Remove from freezer and gently spread 1/2 of the fudge over the entire top of the pie, taking care because the fudge will not stick well to the frozen mousse. Return to the freezer for 4 hours or overnight.
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 1/2 tbsp whole milk or cream
In a small bowl, mix together sugar and cream until smooth. Place in a piping bag with a small tip or in a plastic sandwich bag with a small bit of the corner snipped off. Decorate the top of the pie in the traditional cupcake curlicue fashion.
Serve immediately upon removing from the freezer — the mousse never completely freezes solid so it softens quickly.