From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...Serendipity. I love the word and the happy accidents that it defines. I've had more than my share of kitchen disasters, but they are outnumbered by mishaps that end happily and lead to something new or absolutely delicious. My recipe tonight is the result of a serendipitous kitchen mishap. Several years ago, I had planned to make a Nordic-type cookie. As I set to work, I had a vague recollection of the ingredients I'd need, but drew a blank when it came to their assembly. A search for the recipe was neither quick nor successful, but I was stubbornly determined to use the ingredients I'd set out and decided to create something new. For some reason, candy came to mind and I started to make an oatmeal brittle. I experimented a bit to get the proportions right, but within the hour I had an oatmeal brittle that was really tasty. There was, however, a problem. What do you do with oatmeal brittle? It may be delicious, but it doesn't exactly scream "eat me". I decided to break it into coarse crumbs and use it as a topping. I had some ice cream in the freezer and quickly shaped it into balls that I rolled in the brittle crumbs. I called the Silver Fox into the kitchen for a consultation and taste test. I was still actively participating in recipe contests at that time and he was my best and most honest critic. He was also use to being called into the kitchen at all hours of the day and night. He had several spoonfuls before opining that it tasted like fried ice cream to him. That's basically how oatmeal brittle morphed into mock fried ice cream.
This is one of those stupid-simple recipes that somehow manages to produce a dish that can make your socks go up and down. It is made from readily available ingredients and it will take less than 30 minutes of your time to complete. Not much can go wrong here if you keep your eye on the oatmeal as it cooks. It takes a while to brown, but once it does you have to watch it carefully. It can go from golden to black in seconds and if it goes too dark or starts to smoke, you'll have to throw it out. I do hope you'll give this recipe a try. It is perfect to serve at this time of year, and, yes, it really tastes like fried ice cream. If you'd like to add a more Mexican touch to it, feel free to add some cinnamon to the mix. Here's how the mock fried ice cream is made.
Mock Fried Ice Cream...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite
1 quart vanilla (preferably French vanilla) ice cream
8 tablespoons (1 4-oz. stick) unsalted butter
1/4 cup light or golden brown sugar
2 cups uncooked old fashioned oatmeal
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1) Scoop ice cream into six balls. Place on a cookie sheet and freeze again until solid.
2) Melt butter in a large nonstick skillet. Stir in sugar and cook until mixture begins to bubble. Add oatmeal and salt; cook, stirring, over medium heat for ten minutes or until oatmeal is a deep golden brown. Remove from heat. Stir in corn syrup. Rinse a cookie sheet with cold water; shake off excess water but do not dry pan. Scrape oat mixture onto pan and smooth into a thin layer with a wooden spoon. Allow to cool. Break into coarse crumbs and put in a 1-gallon zip lock bag.
3) When ready to serve, add ice cream balls, one at a time, to bag and shake to coat with oatmeal topping. Transfer to dessert plates or bowls. Garnish with mint if desired. Yield: 6 servings.
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