Toasted Nut Chocolate Covered Ice Cream Balls (Bombes). Sometimes I like to do something fun in the kitchen. Like making these ice cream "bombs". Bombs, because they sort of look like grenades:)... or bombes, because it's a more sophisticated culinary term:). In any case, these are not just fun to make, but equally fun to eat... and they taste a thousand times better than they look. They're a definite treat!
When I first started blogging, I posted a similar recipe(you can see it here) and called them bon bons... they were smaller and simple. Just chocolate and vanilla ice cream. This time around I upgraded them a bit by making them bigger and adding some toasted almonds... resulting in ice cream "bombs". They're actually a bit bigger than golf balls.
The addition of toasted almonds(or other nut of choice) brings in extra flavor... as well another element of crunch besides the chocolate coating. In reality, I added the nuts to make the dipping more manageable. The toasted nut coating protects the ice cream from melting as you dip. It also allows you to roll the ice cream into balls and gives the chocolate something to "grab" on to... without making a total mess. It's quite frustrating to have the chocolate slip off the ice cream as you dip...
The only difficult part with this recipe is trying to keep the ice cream balls frozen while working with them... which means all the time. This requires making the dessert in stages. It's sort of like making multi colored jello, where each layer needs to be solid before adding another subsequent layer. The same goes for this dessert. Ice cream gets scooped unto a plate and frozen solid before being rolled into nuts and frozen again... and only then is it dipped into cooled melted chocolate. Cooled chocolate is key... keeps the ice cream from melting. And even though there's some waiting involved, it's totally worth it in the end.
Once made, they can be kept in the freezer for quite some time... so you can make them ahead for special summer gatherings. The final product is a great summer treat that's sure to please old and young alike. Hope you enjoy...
Tip: When working with the ice cream, it is important to work quickly in all stages... be it when forming them, rolling them in nuts, or dipping them in chocolate. If you are planning on making quite a few pieces, work in small batches(3 or 4 at a time) ... and place them in the freezer immediately.
When dipping in chocolate, you will need to work quickly as the chocolate sets pretty fast.
Note: While I used toasted almonds, you can use any nut of choice... toasted is ideal for extra flavor and crunch. You can also use sugared flavored nuts for something different. For a few them, I used some butter-sugared toasted pecans with a hint cinnamon that I made .... yummy, with a different flavor! I'm thinking if you have a nut allergy you can substitute the nuts with toasted coconut... or even some rice crispies. Other crunchy ideas you may have will also probably work:).
You will need: can make one or as many as you need... I eyeballed the amounts and at one point needed to melt additional chocolate:)
vanilla ice cream(you can use ice cream of choice)
1. Line a plate with plastic wrap. Place in freezer till cold.
2. Using a 1.5 TBS ice scream scoop, scoop out ice cream and place on cold plate. Place in freezer till ice cream is hard. I left mine overnight.
3. Toast nuts and chop finely. I used my toaster oven at 350 F for about 10 minutes or so... or until lightly toasted.
4. Remove ice scream scoops from freezer and roll in nuts... making sure to completely cover with nuts. When covered in nuts, quickly form them in round balls using your hands. Do only a few at a time so they don't melt. Place in freezer to harden as you finish two or three... I left them for half a day or so in the freezer to harden.
5. Melt chocolate in a double boiler. Remove from heat and allow chocolate to cool down, about 85 degF or so... I left mine for about 20-30 minutes at room temp, but it was a warm day. You still want the chocolate to flow, but not be hot to the touch.
6. Line a plate with plastic wrap.
7. Remove nut covered ice cream balls from freezer(you may do a few at at time) and dip in chocolate... you will need to work quickly as the chocolate will set fast. Place dipped ice cream bombes on plastic line plate and place in freezer. If you want, you can sprinkle some toasted nuts on top... when chocolate is still wet. You can also drizzle extra chocolate on top in thin lines for a textured effect. Continue with rest until all are finished.