It’s a slightly harried Gemma here who will no doubt be spending the season waist-high in un-assembled IKEA furniture as we battle ever onwards trying to make our flat habitable. For those of you who can actually access your kitchens without having to climb over a chair, a christmas tree, a box of records (which you broke the handles of and thus can’t move) 70 million computer cables and a racing bike, here’s a festive food post for those who fancy something slightly different for dessert come C-day.
It’s my cousin Eliza’s Antipodean-weather-and-child-friendly icecream Christmas cake, we think the recipe originally came out of an Australian Women’s Weekly cooking supplement but we’re not 100% sure, and I’ve adapted it slightly to add more of a Christmas flavour. We’ve always found that picky kids tend to want to eat this more than a traditional fruitcake, but if you’re aiming it at an under-18 audience perhaps leave out the brandy. Or, indeed, leave it in, if you want the nippers zonked on the couch while you attack the cheese course 😉
BBC Good Food
200gms softened butter
1½ cups icing sugar
400gms good quality dark chocolate (chopped), or mix of dark and milk chocolate if preferred.
3 litres plain vanilla ice-cream (make sure it’s a good quality one as it needs to be re-frozen, and some go ‘grainy’)
pinch of nutmeg and pinch of cinnamon
300gm frozen raspberries
100gm white chocolate
a couple of handfuls of crumbled store-bought sponge cake (or left-overs if you’ve been baking – I find that 2 fairy cakes work well for this) which you can soak in brandy if you so desire
and any/all of these bits to make it more Christmassy – candied peel, glace cherries, dried apricots, nuts, figs, etc etc.
1. Allow the icecream to soften in a mixing bowl
2. Crush the maltesers and white chocolate with a rolling pin (don’t smash into oblivion, just into smallish chunks)
3. Still armed with the rolling pin, attack the raspberries with a lighter hand so that they’re in pieces of differing sizes, then put them in a bowl in the freezer so they don’t melt too much. (All this smashing and rolling-pin-ing is a great way to alleviate the Christmas ‘I stood in this queue for half an hour to buy these two phone covers for my nieces which I had to track down from opposite ends of the store while your disinterested staff looked on and now you’re telling me that it’s closing for lunch what the WHAT?’ stress, if you have it)
4. Cream your butter and icing sugar and then add eggs one at a time.
5. Melt the chocolate slowly, stirring as you go, either in a bowl of warm water (that’s a bowl inside a bowl, btw) or in the microwave on a very low setting, and then add it to the butter/sugar/eggs mix.
6. Line a deep sided cake tin or lasagna dish or the like with baking parchment.
7. Spread about half of the crushed malteser/white chocolate mix onto the bottom of the dish, then pour on half the chocolate/butter/sugar/egg mix over the top and pop in the freezer for about 10 minutes to set it.
8. Add the rasperries, cinnamon and nutmeg, sponge cake and any other bits like candied peel that you’re using to the icecream which should be nicely soft by now, and fold through. Then add the icrecream/raspberry mix to your dish.
10. layer over the remaining chocolate mix and then the rest of the malteser mix. Stud the top with left over whole maltesers, cover the lot with tin foil and keep in the freezer. Take out 5-10 minutes before serving et voila!
Ps. You could also layer this up in a domed bowl instead of a flat dish, and then it would be more pudding-shaped, a la Jamie Oliver’s Christmas Bombe.