Ben Bars Ice Cream

22 Jun

“Man cannot live by bread alone; he must have peanut butter. *”

~ James Garfield

*and ice cream, I would argue!

Ben Bars Ice Cream Bowls

Ladies and Gentlemen:

365Scoops has made it big!

That’s right. My first official review was last night, and I think it went just swell.

Let’s backtrack a bit and I’ll give you some deets.

I recently “met” (I say met in quotations because we met on Twitter, of all places!) Coralie, the brains behind an amazing site called ScoopOnCones. Her website is the official ice cream guide to NYC, providing readers with ice cream shop reviews, really creative ideas for “ice cream crawls” and much more.

Well, ScooponCones approached me and asked whether I would be interested in creating a special flavor for her to review. Naturally I jumped at the opportunity when I learned that Ben Bars were the inspiration. The rest is history.

Forming the bowls

Ben Bars Bowls

To read more about the history of Bens Bars and for the recipe credits see this wonderful post by Ben’s sister at Craving Sustenance.
Ingredients
6 cups Rice Krispies
1 cup natural peanut butter
1 12-oz bag of Butterscotch chips
Method
Pour the 6 cups of rice krispies into a large mixing bowl.
Melt the one cup of peanut butter and the butterscotch chips in a microwave-safe bowl. Heat the mixture for 30 seconds, stir, and repeat three times (totaling 1 minute 30 seconds of melting!).
Next, mix the peanut butter/butterscotch mixture with the rice krispies (careful, it’s sticky!) and pour into a 9×13 pan.
This is where I changed the recipe to form the bowls…Spray small bowls with baking spray. Line with saran wrap and spray again. Press the Ben Bars mixture into the bowl and refrigerate for 3o minutes so that it hardens. Let soften for 10 minutes before serving as they get rather hard when cold! When ready to serve, take the Ben Bars Bowls (tongue twister!) out of the ceramic bowls, scoop in the ice cream and enjoy!

Natural peanut butter right before its mixed into the ice cream base

Ben Bars Ice Cream

Created by me!

Ingredients

2 cups half-and-half

1 cup whole milk

2/3 cup sugar

1/2 cup peanut butter*

2 tsp vanilla extract

*Most recipes I reviewed say to avoid using natural peanut butter because it will separate in the churning process, and that’s definitely true. But, I really wanted to avoid using the processed stuff, and so I used the natural kind and it was delicious!

Method

Thoroughly mix all ingredients together using a hand mixer. The peanut butter will separate a bit, so mix well.

Freeze the peanut butter ice cream according to the manufacturer’s instructions. For me, this was 20 minutes. Transfer to a storage container and put it in the freezer for another 2 hours or overnight so that it hardens enough to form the “perfect scoop” for the Ben Bars bowls (try saying that five times fast!)

Butterscotch ingredients as they melt on the stovetop

Butterscotch Sauce

From Smitten Kitchen

Ingredients
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup light brown sugar (dark brown works just fine too!)
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt,  plus more to taste
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract, plus more to taste
Method
Melt butter in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Add the sugar, cream and salt and whisk until well blended. Bring to a very gentle boil and cook for about five minutes, whisking occasionally.

Look at that bubbling butterscotch!

Remove from heat and add one teaspoon of the vanilla extract, stirring to combine.  Dip a spoon in the sauce and carefully taste the sauce (without burning your tongue!) to see if you want to add additional pinches or salt or splashes of vanilla. Tweak it to your taste, whisking well after each addition. I ended up using a 3/4 of a teaspoon of kosher salt and the listed amount of vanilla to get a butterscotch sauce with the perfect amount of sweet and salty.

The sauce will thicken as it cools. It can be refrigerated in an airtight container and reheated in a microwave. Once rewarmed, you may notice that the butter separates from the sugar/cream mixture. Simply whisk or stir for about 3o seconds and it will combine again.

Oops. I took a few bites from that Ben Bars Bowl. I couldn't resist!

And now, the assembly:

Step 1: Remove the Ben Bars Bowl from the saran wrap and put on a plate

Step 2:  Scoop one large scoop of Ben Bars Ice Cream into the Ben Bars Bowl (if I got paid for every time there was a B in this post I’d be a billionaire!)

Step 3: Drizzle with warm butterscotch sauce

Step 4: Eat and enjoy!

The Verdict: Delicious. The perfect marriage between sweet and salty (and visually appealing as well!)

In the words of ScoopOnCones, “The result is an ice cream homage to Ben Bars: peanut butter, butterscotch, Rice Krispies and nostalgia.”

Enjoy!

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3 Responses to “Ben Bars Ice Cream”

  1. Quest for Fashion Sense June 22, 2011 at 11:48 pm #

    Congrats on the review! Your Ben Bars ice cream bowls look scrumptiously delicious!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Skoffee Ice Cream « - June 23, 2011

    […] Monday Thursday to you all. I intended to post this one earlier (aka on Monday, but then Ben Bars Ice Cream came along and I got […]

  2. Ice Cream: A Global History GIVEAWAY | - August 1, 2013

    […] did 365scoops get to team up with Laura? Well, when I wrote the delicious post about Ben’s Bars many moons ago, I was gifted Ice Cream: A Global History as a thank you. I’ve cherished the […]

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