Jeni’s Spinalong #3 – S’mores Ice Cream with Toasted Marshmallow and Fudge Ripple

smores ice cream 1011

With the third installment of our Jeni’s Spinalong Series, Mrs. Table and I chose a nice, broad theme. Our original plan was a “back to school” theme, during which we discovered that we were creating quite literally the same. exact. ice cream. So, we decided to think bigger and broader with this month’s theme and went for a simple: “Welcome to Fall” theme, or -more accurately – our feels about fall. The recipe requirement? Gravel.

Everyone has their own ideas about fall and what it should entail. No doubt many of you equate the autumn season with pumpkin spice lattes and changing leaves. Shannon thinks about fall harvests and late summer bounties – she, being ever the adventurous one, churned out some crazy good buttermilk sage ice cream with toasted cumin honey and cornbread gravel. Like a delightful marriage of sweet and savory enveloped in creamy, tangy ice cream with crunchy cornbread gravel, it’s the kind of ice cream I can imagine seeing on the menu of my favorite fancy-pants restaurant.

But for me, autumn always evokes memories of backyard bonfires and pullover sweaters. The smell of burning leaves in my hair and the crisp, cool air, burning roasting marshmallows alongside friends and family and squishing them between two crisp grahams. So, for my ice cream, I took this warm, gooey treat and turned it into a firm, cool ice cream. Which is an especially good thing for me since we are still enduring triple digit heat here in Arizona and if I want to feel like I’m standing nearby (or inside of) a bonfire all I need to is take a few steps outside. Now I can finally enjoy my favorite fall treat without any of that ruthless desert heat.

smores cone 1071

Serve it in a waffle cone, or as a sundae topped with a freshly-toasted marshmallow, or even turn it into ice cream sandwiches by pressing the ice cream comfortably  between to graham crackers (a quick dip into some melted chocolate doesn’t hurt, either).

Along with the unveiling of our third Jeni’s Spinalong is an announcement. When you take an over-achiever like Shannon and combine her with an indecisive person like myself what you end up with is a recipe list a million miles long and only 4 installments to shove them into. So, without further adieu, we announce that we will finish out 2015 with MONTHLY installments of the Jeni’s Spinalong series! Aren’t you thrilled?

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go buy some stretchy pants.

smores ice cream 1043

S’mores Ice Cream


    For the ice cream base:
  • 2 2/3 cups whole milk
  • 1 Tablespoon + 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2 ounces (4 Tablespoons) cream cheese, softened
  • 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped graham crackers
  • Mix-ins
  • 2 to 3 cups marshmallows, toasted
  • Salty Graham gravel (recipe below)
  • Chocolate shell (recipe below), syrup , or fudge sauce
  • Chocolate shell:
  • 12 ounces chocolate of your choice, chopped (Hershey's for authentic "S'more" flavor!)
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • Salty graham gravel:
  • 1 cup finely ground graham crackers (about 13 crackers)
  • 3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons fine seasalt
  • 1 stick (8 Tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted


    For the ice cream base:
  1. In a small bowl or ramekin, whisk 2 tablespoons of the milk with the cornstarch.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk the softened cream cheese with the salt until smooth.
  3. Fill a large bowl with ice water, set aside.
  4. In a large 4-quart saucepan, mix together the remaining mil, cream, sugar, and corn syrup. Bring o a boil over medium-high heat and boil for 4 minutes.
  5. Remove the saucepan from the heat, and gradually whisk in the cornstarch-milk slurry.
  6. Return the pan to the heat and return to a boil, stirring with a spatula, for about 1 minute or until slightly thickened. Be careful, it might try to boil over
  7. Carefully whisk a bit of the hot milk mixture into the cream cheese until smooth. Add remaining hot milk mixture and graham crackers and stir to combine Let the mixture sit for about 5 minutes while the graham crackers dissolve.
  8. Working in batches, pour the ice cream through a sieve, pressing the graham crackers through with a spatula. Continue until all of the liquid has been pressed through the sieve. Transfer to a gallon-size Ziploc bag and close the bag.
  9. Submerge the bag in the ice water until cold, about 30 minutes. After 30 minutes you may spin the ice cream, or dry off the bag with a towel and store it in the fridge until you are ready to spin (u to 1 day).
  10. For the gravel:
  11. Preheat oven to 275F.
  12. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment.
  13. Combine everything except the butter in a medium bowl and whisk to combine.
  14. dd the melted butter and stir until large clumps have formed and the mixture resembled wet sand, ensuring all of the mixture is moistened.
  15. Pour the mixture onto the lined baking sheet and spread evenly.
  16. Bake for 10 minutes and remove the pan from the oven. Toss the crumbs with a spatula to break them into smaller pieces and return the sheet to the oven for another 10 minutes, until the gravel is golden brown.
  17. Remove from the oven and cool completely.
  18. Make the magic shell
  19. Combine dark or white chocolate and coconut oil in a medium metal bowl; set over a medium saucepan of simmering water. Stir until chocolate is almost melted.
  20. Remove from heat and continue stirring until completely melted and smooth.
  21. **Or you can melt it in 30 second intervals at 50% power in the microwave, but be very careful not to burn it!**Also, you can buy magic shell at the store because I mean, come on, you're already making everything else.
  22. Let cool slightly (if it’s too hot, it’ll melt your ice cream), 10–15 minutes.
  23. Toast the marshmallows
  24. Line a baking sheet with parchment and preheat your oven's broiler to high.
  25. Place marshmallows in one layer on the parchment and broil just a briefly until toasted.
  26. Set marshmallows aside to cool slightly.
  28. When ready, pour the ice cream base into your ice cream machine and spin according to manufacturer's directions. Once it reaches something akin to soft serve, you're ready to package it.
  29. **HERE YOU HAVE A CHOICE** I layered my chocolate shell, but it will be much easier to scoop if you drizzle it in during the last few seconds of spinning (you don't have to use all of it). This breaks it up into tiny flecks of ice cream that melt as soon as they hit your tongue. If you're using fudge or a liquid sauce, DO NOT mix it in, or it will just mix into your ice cream and not be swirled. Now, let's move on to packaging...
  30. Pour a bit of ice cream into your container (mine filled about 4 to 5 cups of space, so I used two containers). Top with a layer of graham gravel and some toasty marshmallows. Drizzle with your magic shell (unless you mixed that in at the last minute of spinning, in which case, good for you!)
  31. Add another layer of ice cream, gravel, mallows, and chocolate and end with a final layer of ice cream.
  32. Press a piece of parchment against the top of the ice cream and close with a tightly-fitting lid. Place in the coldest part of your freezer for at least 4 hours to firm up. Once firm, you can have more fun!


Want s'more cones? Pour a tablespoon or two of magic shell into the bottom of a sugar cone and swirl around to coat the inside of the shell. Place the cone upside down over parchment-lined baking sheet until the shell hardens. Then stuff some toasted marshmallows, graham gravel, and ice cream into the cone. Top with a scoop of ice cream and Macgyver a way to keep this contraption upright in your freezer (my contraption is a mix of foil and plastic wrap stretched tightly over a tupperware container. I poke holes in the foil and shove the ice cream cone in. It's not pretty but it sort of works. I have a bottom-style freezer so I usually forget to be gentle when closing and end up with ice cream smeared on the wall of my freezer anyway (oops?). ANYWAY, after about an hour in the freezer, remove the ice cream cones from the freezer and dip them into the chocolate shell mixture - two coatings is ideal. Sprinkle with some gravel and return the cone to your Macgyvered contraption for another hour or so.

Want a s'more ice cream sandwich? Smear bottom of your grahams with some chocolate shell (or don't!) and set aside to harden. Press some toasted marshmallow on the graham (or not, it's in the ice cream too, remember!) and add a scoop of slightly-softened ice cream. (If this is your main goal, maybe freeze the ice cream on a saran-lined baking sheet instead, and then you can cut it into squares? I've never tried it but it seems like it should work). Anyway, from here you want to gently press the second graham on top and quickly wrap it tightly in saran wrap, pressing again to try to form some good angles at the edges. Place back into the freezer for another hour or so, then remove for an optional dip into some magic shell. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet (that will fit into your freezer) and return to the freezer another hour. Remove and wrap in plastic wrap and/or foil for storage. I recommend freezing them overnight before eating.

[ ice cream base & gravel adapted from Jeni’s Splendid Desserts ]

[ chocolate shell from Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home ]

[ Check out Shannon’s recipe here! ]

vanilla bean macarons

berry macaron | wee eats

Macarons are probably the most finnicky cookie you will ever come across. So, in my laziness, I was overjoyed to learn that I could find them in freezer section of my local Trader Joe’s store. Of course, curiosity will always get the better of me, so I had to try to make them on my own.

This was not the first time I had made macarons, I made them successfully years ago, less successfully once after that, super unsuccessfully about a month and a half ago (That was the recipe’s fault, not mine. Well, my fault for not doing more research I suppose) and finally, this last time, super successfully. With the help of a small refresher from Sur La Table.

So, finally, the masochism paid off and I got my macarons. And they were delicious! So, to spare you the heartbreak of failure, let’s review what I have deemed to be important to your macaron success.

vanilla macaron | wee eats

1. Weigh your ingredients. You will find plenty of recipes that offer cups instead of grams. Just skip those all together. Honestly you should always be weighing things but I’m far too lazy for that so I opt for cups in almost all my recipes. Macarons, however, will not stand for that. They just won’t. So get out your scale and get to weighing. I have an older version of this one and it seems to work fine.

2. Sift, sift, sift! Large chunks do not a happy macaron make, so sift your almond/powdered sugar mixture through a fine mesh sieve and discard any large chunks that are left behind. Your cookies will thank you for it.

3. Gel colors only! Macarons are a very careful balancing act of liquid to solid ratio and you want to disturb that as little as possible. So, if you would like to color your macarons, opt for gel coloring and add it towards the end of your egg-beating (once you have just reached the stiff peak stage). Add more color than you think you need because the color will fade when the macarons bake. I use these colors. The macarons at the top of this page are really just vanilla shells with red gel coloring and berry filling.

4. Find the Goldilocks zone. Overmixing your macarons will give you a runny batter that is impossible to manage. Undermixing will result in a batter that is too thick and the macarons won’t spread or settle properly (you may notice that your macaron has a “point” after it is piped). Your batter should have the consistency of magma – not too thick and not too thin.

macaron magma gif

5. Use a real piping bag and tip. I’m forever cheap and try to avoid buying piping bags when I am convinced a Ziploc bag with the end cut off will do. This will NOT work with macarons (trust me, I’ve tried). It’s not worth the heartache, just cough up the cash for a couple tips and disposable bags and get on your way. I wouldn’t tell you to buy them if I didn’t think you needed them. I promise.

6. Hands off! After you have tapped your baking sheet to release the air bubbles, you can quickly pop any remaining bubbles you see with a toothpick if you like. But then it’s HANDS OFF for at least 30 minutes. Forming this skin is critical to creating the feet for your baby macarons so use this time to make your filling, preheat your oven, or to say a few prayers for your precious baby cookies. You will know enough time has passed when the tops have changed from shiny to dull and you can gently drag your finger across the top without any issue.

7. Time + Temperature are the two keys to success. (AKA: More Goldilocks stuff.) Remember to turn down your oven as soon as you put the macarons in. If you think you will forget this step, you can preheat to the baking temperature of 300F instead of the higher temperature. If you see your cookies are browning too fast, cover them with foil. If you think they’re cooking faster or slower than the specified time, go ahead and follow your instinct. If you over-bake the cookies, they will be dry and crumbly. If you under-bake them, they will be soft and gummy inside. You want a perfect balance of crisp shell with a chewy interior. It might take a few tries to get it right, but when in doubt I always err on the side of slightly under-baked.

Below you can see two sets of macarons – and the ones on the left are NOT chocolate. The left batch baked at too high of a temperature and over-browned. The others I lowered the oven temperature and covered with a bit of foil to prevent over-browning.

overbaked macaron

8. Be creative! You can get creative with your filling – don’t feel like making a buttercream? Go ahead and use a ganache instead, or simply spread a bit of jam or fruit curd between the cookies! Here I did a ring of buttercream with a dollop of jam in the middle.

macaron filling


9. Practice, practice, practice! If at first you don’t succeed, don’t be afraid to try again! Once you make them, you’ll see that they actually come together quite quickly and since you can freeze them you can have like a month’s supply of macarons at the end of all your hard work! I’m far from a macaron master, but I can confidently say that I can make a darn good macaron and plan to get plenty more practice to up my skill level to play with other flavors and techniques.

macaron practice

vanilla bean macarons


    For the macarons:
  • 110 grams almond flour
  • 200 grams confectioners sugar
  • 100 grams egg whites
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
  • ¼ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 50 grams granulated sugar
  • For the vanilla filling:
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste or extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • For strawberry filling
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
  • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons strawberry jam
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt


    Make the Macarons
  1. Line two baking sheets with parchment and preheat the oven to 375F. YOU WILL TURN THIS DOWN WHEN YOU PUT THE MACARONS IN. DON'T FORGET TO TURN IT DOWN!
  2. Pulse the almond flour and confectioners’ sugar in the bowl of a food processor until finely ground and well blended.
  3. Sift almond mixture into a bowl (or onto a large sheet of parchment if you don't feel like dirtying another bowl. Discard any large chunks that will not go through the sieve.
  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the egg whites on medium-high speed until foamy, then scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean pod into the mixing bowl.
  5. Gradually add the granulated sugar and continue beating until a smooth, shiny meringue with stiff peaks forms, then add vanilla extract and beat a couple seconds more just to incorporate.
  6. Add 1/3 of the ground almond mixture to the meringue THIS IS WHERE YOU WANT TO BE VERY CAREFUL Over-mixing your batter will make it super runny and hard to work with, and your macarons won't get their tiny feet.
  7. Gently fold the 1/3 of almond mixture into the meringue until it is completely incorporated. Add remaining almond mixture and gently fold that in, it will take about 100 strokes (it sounds crazy, I know) - You want it to reach the consistency of "magma' (ha-ha!). So, it should be relatively thick, but still flow easily. When drizzled from above, the ribbon should sit on top of the remaining batter, then slowly be absorbed within about 2 seconds. Another way to check is to run your spatula down the center of the bowl, the two sides should "kiss" within about two seconds (see video in the post above).
  8. Transfer the batter to a piping bag fitted with a plain wide round tip (I used a 1/4 inch tip because it's all I could find). Pipe into small rounds spaced about 1 to 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets - you want to avoid "spiraling" while you pipe, just pipe into the center and allow the batter to flow outward on its own. Each round should be about 1-1½ inches in diameter.
  9. Once piped, bang your baking sheet on the counter about 2 to 3 times to release any air bubbles that are in the batter. Let sit out uncovered 30 minutes to an hour to form their "skin" - The skin is what will help them grow their feet! They are done when the tops are dull and you can touch them gently without leaving a mark.
  10. When ready to bake, turn the oven temperature down to 300F and place the macarons into the oven. I bake mine one sheet at a time (since sitting on the counter doesn't hurt anything). Bake anywhere from 10 to 15 minutes. If they start to brown too quickly, once they have their feet you can cover them with a sheet of foil and continue baking.
  11. When finished baking, place baking sheet on a wire rack and allow cookies to cool completely before moving. When ready to move, use an offset spatula to scrape under the cookies to remove them from the parchment.
  12. Match into approximate pairs that are similar in shape and size for filling.
  13. Make the filling(s):
  14. Using an electric mixer with the whisk attachment, beat butter on medium-high speed until it begins to become light and airy. Add powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla bean paste or extract and continue beating until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add jam (if using) and beat until fully incorporated.
  15. Scrape into piping bag and set aside until ready to pipe.
  16. Fill the cookies:
  17. Fill cookies by piping filling onto one cookie (I do use the spiral method for this, to ensure the filling reaches the edges) and gently pressing the top cookie onto the filling, flat side down.
  18. Once all cookies are filed, place into the freezer for at least 1 hour. I like to wrap mine individually in cello-wrap to keep them fresh and store them in the freezer. You may thaw cookies before eating. Store in refrigerator prior to serving.

[ See the original cookie recipe on Annie’s Eats ]

thursday things

ig sunset

It’s been a while since my lazy good for nothing butt has posted a Thursday Things but I definitely need to get back into it so, alas, here I am! Whether it’s the 108 degree weather, high humidity, or extra hours I’ve been pulling at work it has just been extra hard to get any of this ‘extra curricular’ type stuff done.

Actually I’ve baked a few things for you, but sitting down and writing about them… that part is a bit harder.

I have a macaron recipe coming up for you, I even did research and took one of those fancy cooking classes to level up my skills. We all took turns passing around the baking sheet and piping the macaron batter onto it. Do you see that? I went into the world and even spent time with STRANGERS just for you. I violated my very strict “Stranger Danger” rule just for you guys. Don’t you feel special? You should.

20150628-IMG_2743In other news my Exploding Kittens game arrived. If you’re not familiar with the game, you may be familiar with its creator – Matthew Inman – of the infamous comic blog The Oatmeal. He’s like my hero.

Exploding Kittens

Minions have been attacking Ireland.

Oreo dropped their newest cookie invention – Oreo Thins. Shannon and I tried them for you – you can read all about them here!

oreo thins

And Sir Ian McKellen taught the world how to make scrambled eggs.

almond puff loaf


Sometimes I get my inspiration from restaurants or a particular craving I have. Sometimes they just come to me from my wild imagination or another food blog. But sometimes, it’s literally sent to me… like this one which I received in my Sunday morning King Arthur Flour recipe e-mail. This recipe falls into the latter category.

This almond puff loaf looks fancy, with its layers of fluffy pastry and dense almond, but is actually incredibly easy to make. The texture is almost akin to that of a danish, but not nearly as sweet. The majority of the sweetness in this comes from the jam and icing on top, with the pastry merely serving as a vessel for the almond flavor and delightful flaky yet creamy texture.

You will need a mixer for this, unless you’ve been doing a lot of working out and have some crazy upper body strength. The first layer comes together after just a few minutes in the stand mixer, while the second layer starts off in a saucepan and is then transferred to the mixture and beat until cool. It will form a very thick batter that is spread on top of the bottom layer and then baked. You will want to use a large baking pan (I used a half sheet pan) for these as they will puff quite a bit in the oven. Once puffed and golden brown, you remove them from the oven and spread them with jam so it warms and melts and gets nice and gooey. Then, top with a drizzle of icing and you’re done!

almond puff loaf

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes

Yield: 2 loaves


    For the bottom layer:
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, cut into cubes, cold
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup water, room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • For the middle layer
  • 1 cup water, room temperature
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • For the top layer
  • 2/3 cup jam or preserves
  • 1/2 cup slivered or sliced almonds, toasted (optional)
  • For the icing
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon milk


  1. Preheat oven to 350F and line a half sheet pan with parchment.
  2. Make the bottom layer
  3. In a medium mixing bowl, stir together the flour and salt.
  4. Cut butter into flour using a pastry blender (or hands) until everything is crumbly. Stir in water until the mixture forms a cohesive dough.
  5. Diving dough in half (each half should be about 4 5/8 ounces). Using wet hands, shape each half into a rectangle approximately 10-by-3 inches on the baking sheet, leaving at least 4 inches between the two (they will puff!).
  6. Make the middle layer:
  7. In a small bowl, mix the flour and salt.
  8. In a medium saucepan, heat the water, butter, and salt until the mixture comes to a boil.
  9. Add the flour mixture to the saucepan all at once, and stir until the mixture thickens and bgins to pull away from the sides of the pan. It should take less than a minute.
  10. Carefully transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat at medium speed for about 1 to 2 minutes, allowing the mixture to cool some. If it is too hot, it will cook your eggs when you add them.
  11. Add sugar and beat until incorporated.
  12. Add the eggs one at a time, beating until incorporated. Continue beating the batter until each egg is totally absorbed and the batter no longer looks slimy.
  13. Add almond and vanilla extracts and beat until incorporated.
  14. Divide batter n half, spreading half of the batter over each of the dough strips on the baking sheet. They should be completely covered by the second layer of batter.
  15. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes until the pastry is a deep, golden brown and is very puffy.
  16. Remove from oven and transfer to a wire rack.
  17. For the top layer
  18. While still warm, spread each pastry with jam (I used strawberry for one and boysenberry for the other). The heat of the pastry should help the jam to spread. Sprinkle with toasted almonds (if using).
  19. Make the icing:
  20. Stir together powdered sugar, vanilla, and milk until it forms a thick, pourable icing. If the mixture is too thick, add another teaspoon of milk. If the mixture is too thin, add another tablespoon of powdered sugar.
  21. Drizzle icing over pastries and cut into strips to serve.


* Allow your pastry to cool a bit before drizzling the icing to get nice, clean icing drizzle lines (unlike some of us who don't seem to have the patience to do so).

* If desired, top with toasted almonds for extra crunch and almond flavor.

[ Recipe source: King Arthur Flour ]


grilled pineapple upside down cake


Remember that mochi cake I made last week? Well, the reasons for making it were two-fold. First, I had been eyeballing that recipe ever since I got that book and, second, I’ve been planning to make this grilled pineapple upside down cake concoction for months now, and I required a cake or pound-cake-like substance to do it.

“Why on earth would someone grill pineapple upside down cake?” you ask? Well, why not? It’s summer and people are grilling things and grilling things is fun. The grill imparts a great toasty char and slightly smoky flavor to the cake and caramelizes the pineapple’s sugar, which take the cake up a notch and really just sings “summer”. Add to that a drizzle of homemade brown sugar sauce to take the place of the brown sugar glaze usually baked into the cake. Additionally, I replaced the bright maraschino cherries that are usually dotting the top of a pineapple upside down cake with a fresh cherry sauce, then finished it all off with some Talenti vanilla gelato. Any vanilla ice cream will do, I just happen to be a fan of Talenti.

I made this two ways, one as a “deconstructed cake” – layering the cake, pineapple, and sauces, with a scoop of ice cream on the side. Second, I made it as a parfait, just layering the components in a straight-sided glass. Neither was particularly photogenic. In fact, I could argue that they were both extremely UN-photogenic.

Apparently my 80-degree kithcen is not ice-cream friendly, which turned my parfait into soup in about three seconds flat. I remedied this by stashing my pineapple upside down parfait soup in the freezer to re-solidify and enjoyed it later. Despite not being much to look at, both were super delicious and I highly recommend them. If going the parfait route, though, be sure to chill your cake and pineapple first, to avoid ending up with soup.


grilled pineapple upside down cake


  • 1 prepared pound cake or mochi cake
  • 1 pint vanilla ice cream
  • Coconut oil (I love this spray from Trader Joes, which is much cheaper if you purchase it at the store) or other neutral oil
  • For the pineapple:
  • 1 pineapple, cut into rings
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • For the cherries:
  • 1 pound cherries, washed and pitted
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean (or 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste)
  • zest from half of one medium lemon
  • For the brown sugar sauce
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 stick (4 Tablespoons) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt


    For the cake
  1. Heat grill to medium-high heat.
  2. Cut cake into 1/2-inch thick slices and spray with oil or brush with melted butter.
  3. Cook over the grill until slightly charred, 2 to 3 minutes per side.
  4. For the pineapple
  5. Press pineapple into brown sugar on both sides, cover and refrigerate 30 minutes, or until ready to grill.
  6. When ready to grill, heat grill to medium-high heat and cook pineapple 2 to 3 minutes until grill marks appear. Flip and cook other side 2 to 3 minutes. Repeat on each side, pineapple should be slightly softened and charred.
  7. For the cherries
  8. Combine all ingredients in a large saucepan over medium-high heat.
  9. Cook for 20 to 25 minutes until the cherries are dark red and the sauce has thickened - when you dip a spoon into the mixture it should be coated with a relatively thick cherry coating when you pull it back out.
  10. Allow to cool slightly and transfer to a 8 ounce jar or airtight storage container.
  11. Will keep in the fridge up to 1 month
  12. For the brown sugar sauce
  13. Mix all ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly, 5 to 10 minutes until thickened.
  14. Transfer to airtight storage container (I used 8 ounces but it probably made closer to 9 or 10 ounces of sauce).
  15. Will keep up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator.
  16. For the assembly
  17. Either as a parfait or sundae - with cake on the bottom, topped with brown sugar sauce, pineapple, cherries, and ice cream.
  18. Enjoy!


* The brown sugar sauce will solidify when chilled, but can be re-warmed in the microwave for about a minute to return to its liquid state. Allow to cool slightly before assembling.

* The cherries are also great for sundae toppings, mixed into yogurt, or to make home-made Shirley Temples... or just as a snack.

* Pre-assembled parfaits can be covered tightly with plastic wrap and stashed in the freezer until serving time.

[ Cake from Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream Desserts ]

[ Sauce adapted from Pioneer Woman ]

[ Cherries adapted from Bon Appetit ]

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