These easy to make classic ice cream sandwiches are the perfect make ahead gourmet ice cream dessert. The chocolate shortbread softens to just the right texture in the freezer and you can make them totally your own with your favorite ice cream.
- 1/2 gallon ice cream, slightly softened (see note)
- 2 2/3 cups (about 13 1/3 ounces) all-purpose flour
- 2/3 cup plus 1/4 cup (3 1/2 ounces) cocoa powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (7 ounces) granulated sugar
- 20 tablespoons (10 ounces) unsalted butter
- 2 egg yolks
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Line 9- by 13-inch pan with parchment paper, allowing paper to overhang the sides. Press ice cream into pan and smooth top. Freeze until solid, at least one hour.
Adjust oven rack to upper-middle and lower-middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Sift flour, cocoa, and salt into medium bowl; set aside.
In bowl of standing mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream sugar with butter on medium speed until combined and slightly lightened, about 1 minute. Mix in yolks and then vanilla. Mix in dry mixture until just combined. Divide dough into 2 pieces and pat each piece into a 5-inch square, wrap with plastic wrap, and chill until firm, about 30 minutes.
On a lightly floured surface and working with one piece of dough at a time, roll dough into an 8-inch by 12-inch rectangle. Along the long side, use ruler to cut into 2-inch lengths (you should have 6 pieces). Cut each length in half, creating 12 4x2-inch cookies. Use flat spatula to place cookies onto prepared pans. Using the pointy tip of a thermometer, poke about 15 holes into cookies. Bake until cookies are firm, about 10-12 minutes, rotating pans from top to bottom and front to back halfway through baking. Cool completely.
Remove ice cream from pan and trim the edges to make a neat rectangle. Using the same technique as with the dough, cut the ice cream into 12 4 by 2-inch rectangles. Sandwich the ice cream with the cookies. Wrap the assembled sandwiches separately in parchment paper or foil, and store overnight or serve immediately.
9- by 13-inch pan, ruler
I used chocolate ice cream, but use your favorite! When you trim the ice cream , make sure to leave yourself an 8 by 12-inch rectangle. While they can be served right away, the texture of the assembled sandwiches is best if allowed to rest in freezer overnight. This will allow the cookie to soften slightly.