Treetopia Ice Cream Social – National Ice Cream Month Themed Holiday Trees

I know, I know…a Christmas tree in July?!

In case you didn’t already know, July is National Ice Cream Month! To celebrate I’ve teamed up with Treetopia (who believe their trees don’t have to be limited to one holiday!) and five other bloggers to bring you sugary sweet ice cream themed holiday tree ideas.

What’s even sweeter? Treetopia is giving you the chance to win special treats through their social media giveaway, and brand ambassador, Jen Perkins’ Facebook live contest!

Ready for my ice cream themed creation?

Ice Cream Themed Christmas Tree.jpg

Tada!

 

I started with a pink lighted tree from Treetopia, of course, and decorated it with DIY ice cream ornaments and ice cream string lights.Ice Cream Themed Christmas Tree 3.jpg

I used tissue paper to create pastel scoops and placed them in real sugar cones and cute ice cream cups.

Tissue Paper Ice Cream Ornaments.jpgThen I used colorful mini marshmallows and candies to decorate them!Tissue Paper Ice Cream Christmas Tree Ornaments.jpgFor snow cones I used tissue paper and party hats!

Ice Cream Themed Christmas Tree 3

For extra sweetness I used twine and taffy to make little filler ornaments. Ice Cream Themed Christmas Tree 2

By the way, the pastel pink tree gets even pinker once you turn on the pink lights!

Pink Ice Cream Themed Christmas TreeCan’t forget the sprinkles! I filled Treetopia’s iridescent ornaments with rainbow sprinkles! DIY Sprinkle Ornaments.jpgTo top it all off I used the rest of my tissue paper and a party hat to make a giant ice cream cone. Ice Cream Themed Christmas Tree Topper.jpg

Make sure you check out the rest of the blogs to see more sweet inspiration:

 

Jennifer Perkins

All Things With Purpose

The Latina Next Door

Smart Fun DIY

Celebrate and Decorate

 

And don’t forget to check out Treetopia’s Facebook page for details on how to win some special treats!

 

 

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Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

Are you guys ready for a fun and easy sweet treat? I know you are!

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

One of my husband’s favorite desserts is cookie ice cream sandwiches and he’s always asking if we can make them. I’m always hesitant because I don’t usually feel like baking dozens of cookies and store bought cookies aren’t usually the right texture for optimal ice cream sandwich making. At least that’s what I thought until I found out about the new Otis Smunkmeyer cookies! Click here to find them in a store near you.

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

Their cookies are honestly delicious and are the perfect size and texture for cookie sandwiches. They also have “No Funky Stuff”, meaning they’re made without artificial flavors or colors, high-fructose corn syrup, or partially hydrogenated oil. With cookie baking out of the picture, I have no excuse to not make cookie sandwiches at home. This is such an easy and fun dessert to make and the extras can easily be stored in the freezer for later enjoyment. This is also a great dessert to make with kids! They’re the perfect weekend or after school snack for those days when your kids particularly deserve it.

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

What you need:

Otis Spunkmeyer Cookies

Ice cream

Semi-sweet chocolate chips

Toppings

 

Some of my favorite toppings are snowcaps, crushed potato chips, toffee bits, coconut, sprinkles, and sea salt.

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

First you’re going to make the sandwiches. Just put a scoop of ice cream in between two cookies and lightly press together. Place them back into the freezer until you get your dipping chocolate and toppings ready.

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

Empty a bag of chocolate chips into a glass bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds and then stir for 30 seconds. Repeat this until the chocolate is melted and glossy.

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

Dip half of the cookie sandwiches in the melted chocolate and then dip in your toppings. Place them on a cookie sheet and put them back into the freezer until the chocolate is set.

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

If you have left over sandwiches you can store them in your freezer in ziplock bags or air tight containers.

Chocolate Dipped Cookie Ice Cream SandwichesBut wait, there’s more! WANT A CHANCE TO WIN $250 VISA GIFT CARD??  Otis Smunkmeyer and I have a challenge for you! We want to see your Otis Smunkmeyer recipe hacks. Show us what you can come up with using the new line of Otis Smunkmeyer “No Funky Stuff” products by posting a picture of your recipe and tagging us on social media (handles below). Be sure to use the hashtag #OtisSnackHack. Contest ends 9/28/2016, so hurry up and get your snack on!

Instagram: @melodrama & @OtisSmunkmeyer
Twitter: @melodramablog & @Otis_Spunkmeyer

 

This post was sponsored by my friends at Otis Spunkmeyer, but all opinions are my own.

Caramelized Telera Bread Ice Cream Sandwiches

Happy New Year, you guys! I took a couple of weeks off to decompress from the holidays and all that jazz, but I’m BACK. For this post I’ve teamed up with La Brea Bakery to bring you two really great things.

La Bakery Bakery Super Bowl Giveaway

1. A GIVEAWAY! Now is your chance to win two tickets to the Super Bowl, including hotel and airfare! That’s pretty amazing right? All you have to do is enter here and take a little interactive quiz. If you’re lucky you’ll be sitting in the stadium screaming your head off over goals and touchdowns, or whatever they’re called, before you know it!

2. I may not know a lot about football, but I do know about food. La Brea Bakery’s Telera Roll Sliders are perfect for Super Bowl Sunday. I grew up eating telera, it’s a Mexican bread that is similar to French bread. It’s soft and airy and can be used for any kind of sandwhich. EVEN ICE CREAM SANDWICHES!Caramelized Telera Bread Ice Cream SandwichesI’m not always in the mood for ice cream sandwiches that are made with cookies. They’re just a little too much for me. I know. I’m weird. I do, however, enjoy an ice cream sandwich made on bread. Telera bread happens to be perfect for this. It has a nice crust but is still soft and easy to eat.

I like to do a little sugar brulee on the bread before filling it with ice cream. To do this, you put a thin later of room temperature butter on the bread, and sprinkle sugar over it.Caramelized Telera Bread Ice Cream SlidersCaramelized Telera Bread Ice Cream Sliders

Then place the bread under your broiler so it bubbles up and caramelizes. Just like you’d see on creme brulee.Caramelized Telera Bread Ice Cream Sliders

Let the bread cool and then fill it with ice cream. Delicious! Caramelized Telera Bread Ice Cream SandwichesYou should definitely try serving these at your Super Bowl party.

 

Don’t forget to buy your talera sliders and enter the sweepstakes! Good luck!

 

Homemade Peach Pie Custard Ice Cream

I love pie. I love pie with ice cream more. Sometimes I even like putting pie and ice cream in a blender and turning it into a milkshake. Well, this time I dumped pie into my ice cream maker and made PEACH PIE ICE CREAM. This is the perfect way to use left over pie, and you can experiment with different pie flavors, which I will be doing immediately. For the purpose of this demonstration, I will use peach pie.
Peach Pie Ice Cream Recipe via MelodramaI should note that this isn’t one of those “no churn” recipes, so you’ll need an ice cream maker. I use a small $60 Cuisinart machine and it works great.

What You’ll Need:
1/2 of a peach pie, refrigerated
2 cups whole milk
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup granulated sugar, divided in half
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 large egg yolks
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions:
Beat the egg yolks and half of the sugar together until the mixture is pale and thick.

Meanwhile, over medium-low heat, whisk together milk, cream, the remaining half of the sugar, and salt in a saucepan until mixture to a slight boil.

Once the cream mixture reaches a slight boil, slowly pour and whisk in 1/3 of it into the egg mixture. Add the combined egg/cream mixture back into the saucepan and stir constantly over low heat until the mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon. Do not boil or the eggs will over cook and scramble. This should take about 3-4 minutes.

Once the mixture is thickened, pour through a fine mesh strainer and bring to room temperature. You can let it sit on the countertop, or you can use an ice bath to cool it down faster. Then cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Peach Pie Ice Cream RecipeMeanwhile, rough chop your pie into pieces and refrigerate until the ice cream base is ready.

Once the mixture is cold, pour it into your ice cream maker and let it churn to a soft serve consistency, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a cold bowl and evenly fold in pie pieces. Transfer to an airtight ice cream container and freeze for about 2 hours.

YAY PEACH PIE ICE CREAM!

Peach Pie Ice Cream Recipe via Melodrama The chunks of peaches are my favorite.Peach Pie Ice Cream Recipe via Melodrama

No, just kidding, the chunks of pie crust are my favorite.Peach Pie Ice Cream Recipe via Melodama

Now grab yourself a pie, and all of the above mentioned dairy, and make yourself this ice cream immediately.

Moonshine Cherry Vanilla Chocolate Milkshake

I recently received a jar of these moonshine cherries from Ole Smoky and I am completely smitten. I’m sure I’m going to be using them for heaps of things, but you know me and boozy desserts. I immediately blended them up in a creamy milkshake with vanilla ice cream and dark chocolate shavings. They’re soaked in 100 proof moonshine so they have a serious kick. I was buzzing on both sugar and alcohol by the time I was halfway through the shake. Perfect.

Moonshine Cherry Chocolate Vanilla shake

Since Valentine’s Day is coming up I figured I would share my recipe with you. Either you’re going to want to share this with a date, maybe your gals if you’re into the Galentine’s thing, or you’re going to drink the entire thing alone while watching some Audrey Hepburn movie on Netflix. Either way alcohol, ice cream, and chocolate are pretty standard on Valentine’s Day. Here’s how to mix them all together for a bomb.com milkshake.

I used a 16 oz glass…don’t judge me.

1 pint vanilla ice cream

1/4 cup Ole Smoky Moonshine Cherries (with liquid)

2 tbsp chopped dark chocolate

Blend it all together with a splash of milk if needed. Serve with whipped cream, more chocolate, and a moonshine cherry on top.

 

Ole Smoky describes the cherries as “a sweet hello followed by a warm goodbye.” I can’t describe it any better. When mixed with creamy ice cream and bitter dark chocolate, it’s the ultimate dessert combo. Try it!

 

Thank you to Ole Smoky Tennessee Moonshine for providing product for this post.

 

Pumpkin Bourbon Ice Cream Recipe

Pumpkin Bourbon Ice Cream

Fall is almost here and that means one thing: PUMPKIN. Pumpkin flavored food has become an American tradition and our appetite for it only seems to be growing. Forget the leaves. Forget the sweaters. We want our pumpkin flavored foods and we want them now! Bring on the cookies, pies, and bread puddings.

I usually like to wait until summer is officially over before I indulge in autumnal themed foods, but this ice cream is the perfect recipe to transition you into fall. It’s a cool treat but with all the warm flavors of the season: pumpkin, spice, and bourbon.

It took a couple of tries but I think we nailed it with this recipe. The texture is light and creamy and all of the flavors harmoniously hit your palate. You can taste the pumpkin, spices, and bourbon without one outshining the others.

Ingredients

1 cup pumpkin puree
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
5 egg yolks
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 cup bourbon

In a bowl, mix together the pumpkin puree and vanilla. Cover and refrigerate.

In a mixing bowl with a whisk attachment, combine the egg yolks, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, salt, nutmeg, 1/2 cup cream and 1/4 cup brown sugar. Whisk until smooth and sugar is dissolved.

Then, in a 2 qt saucepan over medium heat, combine the milk, the remaining 1/2 cup of cream, and remaining 1/2 cup of the brown sugar. Cook until little bubbles form around the edges of the pan, about 5 minutes.

Remove the cream mixture from the heat. Gradually whisk about 1/2 cup of the hot mixture into the egg mixture until smooth. Then, pour the egg mixture back into the pan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly at a low simmer for about 5 minutes and it is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon and leaves a clear trail when a finger is run through it. Do not boil! Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a clean bowl. Let cool to room temperature. Refrigerate until chilled.

Note: You can cool the mixture in an ice bath by placing the bowl in a larger bowl partially filled with ice water, stirring occasionally until cool. This will cool the custard faster. Otherwise, place plastic wrap directly over the custard (to avoid a skin from forming) and let cool on countertop, before refrigerating.

Whisk the pumpkin mixture and the bourbon into the chilled custard. Transfer to an ice cream maker and freeze according to your machine’s instructions. For firmer ice cream, transfer to freezer safe container and freeze for an additional 2-3 hours.

Makes about 1.5 quarts

Serve with crumbled graham crackers or speculoos cookies for added delight.

Pumpkin Bourbon Ice Cream Recipe

 
Special thanks to Cuisinart®.

Aperol Pistachio Ice Cream Soda

Remember when you were a kid and you were all like “I wonder what these things would taste like if I mix them together…” and then you’d come up with some crazy concoction and make your friends eat it? That’s something I still do. Except I’m way better at it now and I take great care not to make people gag when they taste it.

Genius struck when I was going to town on a pint of pistachio and thought to myself: “Self, that Aperol over there would probably go pretty swell with this pistachio gelato. How could it possibly be bad? I mean they’re both Italian, right?” After all, Pistachio pairs well with rhubarb and citrus, both of which are part of Aperol’s ingredients and flavor profile. I also recall a cocktail from the Kensington Hotel in London that was made with Aperol and dry pistachio.

Well I was right. Guys, I was on a tasty mission and this ice cream soda was it.

Aperol Pistachio Ice Cream Soda

 

Ingredients

Pistachio Gelato or Ice Cream
Aperol
Seltzer Water

Pour 1 1/2 ounce of Aperol into a glass. Add two 2 scoops.  Top it off with seltzer. Watch it all fizz up and float together.

 

Aperol Pistachio Ice Cream Soda Aperol Pistachio Ice Cream Soda

Serve with straws and spoons for ultimate enjoyment. And then eat it. It’s SO good. Boozy ice cream sodas are definitely a must have for your next shindig.