May 13, 2013

Snickers Icebox Cake

Icebox cakes are supposed to be simple since they require no baking. The concept is to stack something absorbent like graham crackers with something gooey like pudding. The moisture from the pudding softens the crackers into a cake-like consistency. This icebox cake from Bakers Royale is not so simple because everything except the graham crackers and the snickers are homemade. That makes it a bit putzy. You could simplify it by using storebought rather than homemade versions for everything.

End result is pretty tasty. Not tasty enough to keep my family away from my birthday peanut butter pie, which will be posted soon. For that reason, I deem this recipe a failure since it was the decoy dessert to give me peanut butter pie all to my lonesome. (Well, I'd share with my inner child, of course. That's my favorite phrase while I'm pregnant.)

Snickers Icebox Cake
16 whole crackers
8 fun-size Snickers, chopped
2/3 cup cornstarch
1 cup sugar
Pinch of salt
6 cups cold whole milk
1 Tbsp. pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup dark chocolate, chopped
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1 cup sugar
6 Tbsp. water
4 Tbsp. butter
1/4 cup heavy cream
2/3 cups dark chocolate
1 Tbsp. heavy cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar, sifted
4-5 Tbsp. water, warm

To make the pudding, combine cornstarch, sugar, salt and milk in a bowl, and whisk vigorously. Transfer mixture to a heat-proof bowl, and place over (not on) simmering water for approximately 20-25 minutes stirring occasionally. Pudding is ready when it it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon and leave ribbons when pudding is drizzled on top of itself. Add vanilla. Split mixture in half, and add chocolate to one half. Whisk to combine. Add peanut butter to remaining half, and whisk to combine. Set aside to cool slightly.

While preparing the pudding, make the caramel sauce. Place sugar and water into a saucepan over medium low heat, and stir the until sugar has dissolved. Once sugar has dissolved increase heat to high. At this point do not stir the mixture directly. Now and then, using the handle, give the pot a swirl to keep the mixture moving. The mixture will start to bubble after a minute or so. Once the mixture starts to turn a light golden shade, add the butter and heavy cream. The mixture will bubble wildly. Whisk to combine (bubbles will subside upon cooling). Set aside to cool completely.

To make the ganache, place chocolate and heavy cream in a bowl over simmering water. Let chocolate and cream sit for 2 to 3 minutes to melt without stirring. Then slowly stir mixture to combine. Add powdered sugar and mix to combine. Add water 1 tablespoon at a time, mixing after each addition until pouring consistency is reached. Set aside and let sauce cool to warm.

To assemble the cake, line an 8 x 8 pan with foil with a 1-inch overhang on each side. Place graham crackers side-by-side until bottom of pan is covered. Spread a thin layer of chocolate pudding on top. Place second layer of graham cracker on top of chocolate pudding. Spread a thin layer of peanut butter pudding on top. Continue alternating layers with chocolate and peanut butter pudding while separating each pudding layer with a graham cracker layer. Pour cooled caramel sauce on top. Pour cooled ganache sauce on top, and add chopped Snickers on top. Finish with caramel and chocolate drizzle.

Place cake in refrigerator or freezer for at least 8 hours to set or overnight. (Freezer will create a pudding texture closer to ice cream). Makes one 8 x 8 cake.

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