It’s practically a miracle that I am posting this recipe in time for the upcoming patriotic holiday because I am usually too late when I think up holiday themed recipes, but here I am, getting it all done and stuff.
LOOK AT ME GO.
I soooo plan to make this again on July 4. My daughter, who is like the biggest birthday cake ice cream fan ever, told me this was just about perfection to her. That’s saying a lot, people. You have no idea how picky she can be. This ice cream is done the way we feel like birthday cake ice cream should be done–very little cake with lots and lots of frosting.
We have serious, epic sweet teeth around here. We wish we weren’t like that but we are what we are.
This is a version of my favorite and oh so versatile vanilla ice cream base. The possibilities with this base are endless. This could be easily adapted to become regular birthday cake ice cream too, by changing out the colors. Boom.
And since I had my sweet niece here baking with me all of last week, I had her dip some cones in white bark and sprinkles because making children do the jobs you don’t want to do is SO AWESOME AND FUN.
One more thing…HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA! A little early, but still.
Here are my notes:
–I know people will fuss about this, but you are actually going to use only about 1/4 of the cake mix when it’s all said and done. I baked my cake in 2 nine-inch layers, but I wound up frosting only one (because, like I said, we like mostly frosting), then I wound up only using half of that for the actual ice cream. But you would easily bake just one layer, then make the rest into cupcakes. Double my icing and you should have enough to frost the cupcakes too. I recommend doubling the ice cream recipe so you can use all the cake pieces, because 2 quarts of ice cream? Clearly not enough.
–I just used a regular yellow cake mix to make things easy.
–I had to stir in some of the cake pieces by hand because my ice cream maker overfloweth when I tried to fit them all in while it was churning. No biggie, though. Yours may be bigger, so adjust according.
–Don’t even think that the cake has to be pretty. You are just going to chop it into pieces anyway. See below? Not pretty.
–Yeah, the red should be more red, but I realized too late I was out of red food coloring. Boo. I know you will do better than me.
- 1 box yellow cake mix plus ingredients to make cake
- 3 tablespoons red, white, and blue sprinkles
- 2 sticks (1 cup) butter, softened to room temperature
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1-2 tablespoons milk
- Red food coloring
- Blue Food coloring
- 2 cups half-and-half
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 8 large egg yolks
- 1¼ cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- For the cake: Mix cake according to package instructions, stirring in 3 tablespoons of red, white, and blue sprinkles. Bake cake according to package instructions in two 9-inch cake pans. You will only use one cake layer and can reserve the other for another use OR you can make one cake layer and use the remaining batter for cupcakes.
- Cool one cake layer completely, then split in half horizontally. Set aside.
- Beat butter on high speed with stand or hand mixer. Beat in the powdered sugar, vanilla, and 1-2 tablespoons milk until a smooth, spreadable consistency. Divide the frosting in half into two separate bowls, then stir in blue food coloring to one and red to another, until desired color is reached. Frost first cake layer half with one bowl of frosting, then place second layer half on top and frost with the other color. It is not necessary to frost sides or to make it look pretty. Freeze cake until firm. When cake is firm, chop cake into small bite-size pieces. Place back in freezer. They are now ready to be mixed into the ice cream.
- For the ice cream: Place the half-and-half, milk, and heavy cream in a medium heavy bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Bring the mixture to just a simmer, (just before scalding at 170 degrees on a candy thermometer), stirring occasionally.
- Meanwhile, in a medium mixing bowl, beat the the egg yolks on medium speed with a hand-mixer until they are light in color. Gradually add the sugar and continue to beat until sugar is dissolved and mixture is thick and pale yellow in color.
- Temper the hot cream mixture into the egg mixture by gradually adding about ½ cup of cream mixture at a time to the egg mixture, until about a third of the cream mixture has been added, whisking constantly while you are adding the cream mixture.
- Whisk the egg mixture back into the cream mixture in the saucepan and place over low heat. Cook, stirring almost constantly, until the mixture thickens, about 5-7 minutes. Strain the mixture through a fine mesh strainer into a pitcher or container with a pouring spout on it. Stir in the vanilla extract. Refrigerate for at least four hours to overnight. (Overnight is best and yields the smoothest consistency.)
- Pour into an ice cream maker and process according to the manufacturer's instructions. Just before the ice cream is done, slowly add about half of the cake pieces to it (I only used half of my cake pieces for my two quart ice cream maker and reserved the other half for a second batch) and let the machine mix them in. If there is not a lot of room in the machine, these can be stirred in by hand. Transfer to a freezer proof container (I like to use a loaf pan) and place in freezer to desired firmness is reached. About 2½ quarts of ice cream.