Chocolate-coffee ice cream and cake squares put all good things together


Cake and ice cream make a good couple. They balance each other out. One’s churned cold, the other’s baked hot. One’s creamy, the other crumbles. One loves cold weather, the other resents it.

 Blistering marital bliss. Ice cream insists on arctic temperatures; show it a cupboard or countertop, and it goes all drippy. Give cake a shelf in the freezer, and it turns frosty, brittle and dry. 

 The pair could retreat to separate homes. But a little counseling, some willingness to change can help. If cake can focus on its best features — chocolate, sugar and eggs — and forgo its old habits — like butter and flour — it can live in pliant, delicious comfort alongside ice cream. 

 Win-win for them. Win-win for the rest of us. 

 ——— 

 ICE CUBES 

 Prep: 20 minutes plus time to freeze 

 Bake: 13 minutes 

 Makes: 9 squares 

 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened, for pan 

 9 tablespoons sugar 

 2 eggs, separated 

 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate 

 2 tablespoons brewed coffee 

 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 

 1/2 teaspoon salt 

 1/4 cup ground almonds (sold as meal or flour) 

 2 quarts coffee chip ice cream 

 Whipped cream, to serve, optional 

 Chocolate sauce, to serve, optional 

 1. Prep: Butter an 8-by-8-by-2-inch baking pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper, leaving some overhang. Butter parchment and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon sugar. 

 2. Whip: Whip egg whites and 2 tablespoons sugar to glossy peaks with an electric mixer. 

 3. Mix: In a large bowl set over simmering water, melt chocolate with coffee into a paste. Still working over simmering water, stir in yolks, vanilla, salt and remaining 6 tablespoons sugar. Remove bowl from heat. Stir in one-third of the egg whites. Fold in remaining whites, then the ground almonds. 

 4. Bake: Scrape batter into prepared pan. Bake at 350 degrees until just set, about 15 minutes. Cool. Grasp parchment overhang and lift out the cake. 

 5. Pack: Line the same pan with plastic wrap, with several inches overhang. Scoop in slightly softened ice cream, pressing firmly and smoothing the top. Set cooled cake on top, sugar-side up. Cover with overhanging plastic wrap. Freeze firm, at least 8 hours. 

 6. Stack: Unmold and unwrap frozen cake-and-ice-cream square. Set cake-side down on a cutting board. Dip a heavy knife into hot water, wipe dry and slice into 9 squares. Serve with whipped cream and/or chocolate sauce.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Food & Dining

Spicy, smoky, cheesy, melty burgers. On the inside.
Spicy, smoky, cheesy, melty burgers. On the inside.

Hidden inside these tame-looking burgers is a smoky and spicy blend of bacon, chipotle, cheese and something unexpected - pepperoni. Because the ground beef part of these burgers is patted fairly thin, there's less of a chance you'll undercook it. For a little extra texture and flavor, crispy fried onions go into the beef. They can be cooked in a grill...
NEW DETAILS: Dayton restaurant up for sale
NEW DETAILS: Dayton restaurant up for sale

A Dayton restaurant that has closed may not be gone for good. The owner of the recently closed Paradise Key Cafe location at 1060 Patterson Road in the Breitenstrater Plaza, is considering reopening it under a new concept or selling it, owner Larry Parr said.  The asking price for the business is $75,000.  “It is...
Celebrated Cincinnati chef opening new restaurant in Warren County
Celebrated Cincinnati chef opening new restaurant in Warren County

The second Frenchie Fresh restaurant in the region will open at Deerfield Towne Center this summer. MORE: 20 things to do, see, eat in Cincinnati  Local chef and restaurateur Jean-Robert de Cavel’s new fine, fast-casual dining concept, Frenchie Fresh, puts a French twist on American-inspired classics. Think mac ‘n&rsquo...
20 wines under $20: Plenty of variety and not one chardonnay
20 wines under $20: Plenty of variety and not one chardonnay

Among the many harbingers of warm weather, one of my favorites is the NYU Hawk Cam, starring a pair of red-tailed hawks that have nested since 2011 on a ledge, overlooking Washington Square Park, outside the office of the president of New York University. As I sit at my computer, I’ve got half an eye on this year’s nestlings, three little...
Fresh mango and tomatillos make this zesty salsa stand out from the rest
Fresh mango and tomatillos make this zesty salsa stand out from the rest

This chunky, fruity salsa makes an excellent dip for tortilla or plantain chips. It's also good on hot dogs, tacos, eggs and grilled fish. The depth of flavor found in Ataulfo mangoes (also commonly called Champagne, yellow or honey mangoes) is preferred, but you can substitute with a larger variety, such as Tommy Atkins, as long as it's very ripe...
More Stories