I’d call this a DIY Friday, but there’s just no way in the world you can buy a gluten free chocolate eclair ice cream bar. Good Humor doesn’t make it, and let’s face it: they never will. If you want to enjoy the ice cream-and-cake goodness of a chocolate eclair ice cream again, take my hand and follow me. Let’s do this.
First, let’s talk popsicle molds: I have this 10-pop maker from Progressive (aff link). I like it, but I don’t love it. If the pops you are making aren’t frozen completely solid, it can be a bit difficult to get them out of the mold. Running hot water along the outside of the mold until the pops release is the only way, but the whole business can be a bit challenging when you’re making ice cream, not ice pops. Ice cream, by its very nature, doesn’t freeze rock solid. If it did, it wouldn’t be ice cream. I also have these silicone molds from Silkomart (aff link) and they work beautifully. They only make 4 at a time, though, unless you want to buy multiple packages. But the pops come out without a fuss, as you peel away the silicone easily.
But if you really want to make things easier on yourself, buy some packaged uncoated vanilla (or chocolate) ice cream bars, and work with those instead.
Now, on to these beautiful, taste-just-like-you-remember ice cream bars.
The “cake crunch” is really just super soft chocolate cookie crumbs and super soft vanilla cookie crumbs, both made from the same basic recipe. The method is super simple, as you make one basic dough, then add cornstarch to one half and cocoa powder to the other. Then, roll out the dough between two sheets of parchment, slice into rectangles of roughly the same size and bake until juuuuust set. Be careful not to overbake, and not to roll the dough too thin, or the cookies will be crunchy instead of soft. Then, crumble the still-warm cookies, mix the chocolate and vanilla crumbs together and press onto your ice cream pop.
The original Good Humor bar has a chocolate ice cream center, surrounded by vanilla ice cream and a thin chocolate coating and then the cake crunch. Our bars are just vanilla, surrounded by cake crunch. There are ways that we could make a chocolate-and-vanilla ice cream bar, but I decided to keep things super simple. The chocolate coating is nearly impossible on a homemade bar because the minute you dip an ice cream pop in melted chocolate, the ice cream begins to melt, so I went without. Drizzle yours with a little melted chocolate on top, or even make some bars chocolate and some vanilla. Either way, it’s all about the cake crunch. And this one hits all the right cake crunch notes. Mission: accomplished.
*Alternatively, you can purchase packaged, uncoated vanilla ice cream bars.
Prepare the ice cream according to the recipe instructions and pour it into the molds of an ice pop mold. Place the mold in the freezer for 1 hour or until firm enough to hold a stick in place, and place a popsicle stick in the center of each. Return to the freezer and freeze solid (at least 4 hours).
Make the cake crunch dough. Preheat your oven to 325°F. Line rimmed baking sheets with unbleached parchment paper and set them aside. In a large bowl, place the flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, salt and sugar, and whisk to combine well. Create a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the butter, egg and vanilla, mixing to combine after each addition. The dough should be thick but relatively soft. Divide the cookie in half, placing each in a small bowl. Add the cornstarch to one half and mix to combine, kneading with clean hands at the end. Add the cocoa powder to the other half and mix to combine, kneading with clean hands at the end.
Prepare and bake the dough. Roll out one piece of the dough about 1/3-inch thick between two sheets of unbleached parchment paper, using the techniques in this post. Uncover the top sheet of parchment paper and, using a pastry wheel, pizza cutter or shapr knife, slice the dough into rectangles of roughly the same size, each about 2-inches x 1 1/2-inches. Place about 1/2-inch apart on the prepared baking sheets. Gather and reroll scraps. Repeat with the remaining piece of dough. Place the baking sheets, one at a time, in the center of the preheated oven and bake until just set and not shiny on top (8 to 9 minutes). Do not overbake. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes before crumbling in your palms into small crumbs. Combine the chocolate and vanilla crumbs in a bowl and mix.
Assemble the pops. Remove the ice cream pops from the molds by running warm water along the outside of each mold and lifting the pops out. If the pops are melting when you remove them, place them on parchment-lined cutting board or other flat surface and place back in the freezer until firm. Remove the frozen pops from the freezer and press into the cake crunch mixture carefully but firmly to help the mixture adhere to all sides of each pop. Serve or wrap tightly and freeze until ready to serve.
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