Bye, bye Miss American Pie: Creamy apple pie ice cream

You probably know the saying ‘American as apple pie’. So this ice cream is as American as apple pie as it’s literally apple pie. It also requires you to listen to Don McLean’s “American Pie” while preparing it. Yes, I know it is NOT a song about apple pie or even pie in general, but I do however think it’s one of those songs that sounds like a summer BBQ dessert at the end of a warm sunny day that you spent at the beach… just like apple pie, which tastes like the perfect summer BBQ dessert. Besides, you can thereby dance through your kitchen while preparing ice cream. I doubt cooking could get any better than this. Well, maybe if you have a glass of chilled apple cider along with it.

The key to a perfect apple pie is the apples. While you might think “well, that is hardly a surprise, since it’s APPLE pie,” bear with me. Apples come in as many different flavors, textures and acid levels as there are colors in the rainbow. So, the ones you want to look out for are firm, as you don’t want the pie to have a mushy filling. Besides, as the apple is the star, the taste is clearly important and should ideally be mostly sweet, but have a tender tartness to counterbalance the sweetness. Granny Smith or Golden Delicious are therefore great choices. For me personally, the best approach is a combo of 50% Granny Smith and 50% Golden Delicious. Then, you get the firmness of the former and the sweetness and tartness of the latter. While Granny Smith brings a lot to the table in terms of steady texture, even when you cook or bake them, they slightly lack in flavor, which is perfectly compensated for by the Golden Delicious. These tend to loose texture during the cooking process, hence need an apple companion that makes up for that.

The great news is that you do NOT need an ice cream maker to prepare this sweet moment of full indulgence. All you need is a pan, bowls and a hand mixer.

If you wanna splurge and fully indulge, going all in, how about apple pie ice cream with a slice of apple pie? Ideally, an apple pie that is still oven-warm. Another great way to enjoy this ice cream is by adding caramel sauce.

So, while that all sounds amazing to you, you still can’t help but think: “But I’m a cherry pie kinda gal/guy!” Don’t worry, I got your back. You can actually turn this into a cherry pie ice cream by exchanging the apple topping with the cherry pie filling of my German-American chocolate crumble cherry pie.

Servings: 10  *  Calories per servings: 301 kcal  *  Preparation time: 30 min  *  Start to finish: 5 hours

Ingredients for the ice cream

  • 14 ounces (400 ml) of sweetened condensed milk
  • ½ a teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (16.2 ounces/480 ml) of chilled heavy cream
  • 2 handfuls of crushed speculoos cookies

Ingredients for the apple topping

  • ¼ cup (1.8 ounces/50 grams) of brown sugar 
  • 1 tablespoon of soft unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 2 medium-sized apples suitable for apple pie (e.g., one Granny Smith and one Golden Delicious)

Start by preparing the apple topping. First, cut them into tiny chunks. Then, add the sugar and butter to a pan and bring it to a medium heat. Make sure to continuously stir while both are melting and blending. Next, add the apple chunks and cinnamon and continue stirring. Let it cook for 10 minutes until the apples are tender. Pour everything into a bowl and place it in the fridge to chill.

As for the ice cream, use a large bowl and add heavy cream. Stiffen it with a hand mixer. Combine the condensed milk, cinnamon and vanilla in a small separate bowl and then gently fold it into the whipped cream with a spatula or large spoon. Next, fold in the speculoos cookie crumble.

Then, pour the ice cream base into the container you want to use for storing it. Add the apple topping mix on top and swirl it into the ice cream. The goal is not to aim for a homogenous blend, but to rather allow creative chaos to be the mantra of the day.

Chill the ice cream in the freezer for 4-5 hours.

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