By the time you read this I should be out of the studio, out of the kitchen, and off-line. Maybe I will even switch my phone to airplane mode so I stop getting pinged by spam and requests for political donations. That is an excellent idea. I will wedge myself into a comfy position on the bank of the river with my book, my watercolors, and look out adoringly at Mr. Friday as he casts away for trout. Though he keeps muttering about “Non-hatch. Non-hatch…” I guess we will be flipping burgers over the campfire tonight and not fish.
Because I am feeling generous (and grateful) for being out of town and enjoying myself, I will share with you these easiest of dessert ideas. I cannot call it a recipe, because it is time-honored, greatly revered, summertime, PTA, Junior League cookbook, crowd-sharing genius notion of combining ingredients. The only skill you need is for whipping cream, and I trust you can do that without having to look at YouTube videos. (And do not disappoint me by using Cool Whip. It is fake and phony and an anathema.)
Summer Classic: Ice Cream Pie
1. Go to the store and buy a prepared pie shell. Spend $3. It’s worth it. I bought a shortbread pie shell, but you can use a graham cracker pie shell, or a chocolatey Oreo shell. (Shameless shill that I am, I used a Keebler pie shell. If you want to toil earnestly in a hot kitchen, you can grind up gingersnaps and make your own, but I am on vacation, and with all the time I am saving, I will write you a postcard.)
2. Buy half a gallon of ice cream. I opted for Breyer’s strawberry, but I bet a blueberry ice cream, or even French vanilla would be yummy. Here is an edited list of the veritable panoply of Breyer’s ice cream flavors: Cherry Vanilla, Peach, Chocolate Truffle, Heath Bar, Tiramisu, Butter Pecan, Butterscotch Blondie, Coffee, Chocolate, Thin Mint, Samoas, Waffle Cone, Oreo Cookies and Snickers. Those are just the ice creams. There are even more gelatos! Ben and Jerry have a kabillion flavors, too: https://www.benjerry.com/flavors/ice-cream-pints
3. Buy a pint of heavy whipping cream. I always buy the store brand. But you can get fancy and go all organic and buy an over-priced name brand is you wish.
4. Find some deelish seasonal fruit. Mr. Friday’s eyes were bigger than his breakfast stomach, so we had a lot of strawberries and blueberries in the fridge. Sliced peaches would be very pretty. Raspberries or blackberries are always enjoyable. Use your head, and whatever you have on hand or can score at the farmers’ market. Think about what would be easiest to eat while sitting in the dark on the back porch when you are waiting for the Perseid Meteor Showers to explode over your head.
5. Open the pie shell packaging. Open the ice cream container. Let the ice cream soften up a little bit. Be sure to take a couple of test spoonfuls. Use an ice cream scoop to dig the ice cream out of the container, and to plop it into the pie crust shell. After a couple of minutes I schmeared the ice cream nice and flat using an offset icing spatula, which gave me the Food52 vibe of urbane sophistication. I like to look like I know what I am doing, even if it is only me and Luke the wonder dog alone in the kitchen. Pop the ice cream-filled shell back into the freezer while you whip the cream.
6. Slice the strawberries or peaches. I always toss strawberries in a little lemon juice and sugar.
7. Using your sophisticated city slicker offset icing spatula, twirl the freshly whipped cream onto the layer of ice cream. Delicately arrange the fruit on top of the ice cream. Somehow the blueberries that I centered carefully drifted a little to the northwest, after I moved on to the strawberries, but that is a gravitational mystery that will never be solved. Put everything back in the freezer to firm up.
8. Flip your burgers. Or grill the trout. Have some green salad. And then slice up the pie. Sit back. Settle in. Tune out. Cool down. Enjoy.
https://www.gimmesomeoven.com/10-minute-ice-cream-pie/ (They advocate Cool Whip! Heresy!)
Another family fave: https://butteryourbiscuit.com/chocolate-wafer-icebox-cake/ Although ours never look quite so pretty!
“Have you ever spent days and days and days making up flavors of ice cream that no one’s ever eaten before? Like chicken and telephone ice cream? Green mouse ice cream was the worst. I didn’t like that at all.”
― Neil Gaiman