The countdown to Christmas is on! And my sweet tooth, which is never truly under control, is very happy about that. With Christmas comes a lot of baking and organising as well as trying to find that perfect present for our loved ones, and for us here on the farm we’re smack bang in the middle of harvest. It’s a very busy time of the year and with my “A Swede in Australia” inspired Christmas ice cream cake full of saffron and gingerbread I want to give you a treat that takes no time to whip up but still will be a highlight on the Christmas table.
This cake is also my contribution to the Scandinavian Christmas Countdown Calendar hosted by the inspiring Gina from Willowday. Once again I have joined forces with a bunch of wonderful creative minds to bring you a new Christmas DIY project or a wonderful recipe every day until Christmas Eve!
While I love this time of year here in Australia I really miss the cold snowy December’s of my childhood. Celebrating Christmas in 35 degree heat has it’s charms (not that I can think of any at the top of my hat apart from that we can go to the beach before our ginormous Christmas lunch!) but for me a Christmas needs to be a little chilly to be truly cozy, so this ice cream cake was created to bring a bit of chilliness to Australian celebration. But it works just as well on a cold Scandinavian winter day alongside a warm cup of mulled wine.
As always I taste test everything on myself and my ruthlessly honest (when it comes to cakes!) husband (as well as my little girl too this time!) and this cake got the “this is the best thing you’ve ever made” from my dear farmer. That is, of course, flattering but almost not so at the same time as it is so incredibly easy to make! If you are short on time you can make it with store bought gingerbread and a tub of vanilla ice cream. If you have lots of time you can go all out and use your own cookies and maybe even make your own ice cream too!
One thing is important to add, the recipe states that the cake needs to freeze over night and I suggest you make sure it does! Don’t do what I do and get excited (read impatient) and only let it freeze for three or so hours. It works but is perhaps not the best to try and take photos of as it will melt rather fast if it’s not completely ice cold. But the slight melt you can see in one of the photos might also have had something to do with a little someone whotried to eat all the gingerbread crumbs, interrupting her mamma with delightful giggles while trying to use the left over ice cream as body paint.
Anyway! Enough of my rambles. I hope you will like this ice cream cake and that it will take a little bit of stress out of your hectic Christmas with it’s simplicity. Have a wonderful holiday and lots of love your way!
Gingerbread and Saffron Ice Cream Cake
1 25cm round tin lined with baking paper in the bottom
2 big bowls
Big metal spoon
Large serving plate
For the base
300 g gingerbread cookies
125 g butter
For the ice cream layer
3 l of good quality vanilla ice cream
1 gram of saffron threads infused in a little warm milk (use more or less saffron here depending on the flavour intensity you would like!).
Or anything else you might like!
- Warm a couple of tablespoons of milk and add your saffron. Stir a little and let it infuse in the milk for about an hour (a bit shorter/longer works too!)
- Place your vanilla ice cream in a large bowl and let it soften.
- In a food processor process the gingerbread cookies until they are a finely crumbed then melt the butter and add to the mix and make sure all crumbs are coated.
- Press out the ginger cookie base into the bottom of the round tin.
- Add the saffron to the vanilla ice cream and stir until it’s evenly distributed through the ice cream. Pour the saffron ice cream into the tin.
- Place the ice cream cake in the freezer and freeze over night.
- To decorate finely crumb some gingerbread cookies and sprinkle over parts of your cake. Decorate with little gingerbread men, cookies and any fresh flowers you can get your hands on. Frosted berries or marzipan fruit is also a good idea!
- Eat straight away and have a jolly sugar filled Christmas!