You know back in January when I told you all about my job change? I said I’d give more details about the new venture in due course, then never mentioned anything again. Well. Where to begin? I stayed at the startup for 4 months, during which I gained a whole load of experience and useful knowledge. However, it turned out that the job wasn’t really for me. After much thought and many discussions with The Mister, we decided to consider doing something of our own. However, for both of us to give up paid jobs in order to venture into the great unknown seemed a bit silly. Well, very silly. So, he came up with this idea. Seriously, it was his idea. “Why don’t you become a professional food blogger?” he said. At first I thought I should book a doctor’s appointment for him. But then we talked some more, and some more, and it started making sense. For us it did anyway (if you ask my dad he might disagree). Sure, I will have no income for a looong time, but with The Mister’s support, and some savings, I can concentrate on building up a good blog and maybe even getting some people to read it. There are also a million other ideas swimming around in my brain for all sorts of projects, things I have always been interested in doing, and the great thing is that they can all cozy up under the umbrella of a food blog. For example an e-shop, or an e-cookbook, that sort of thing. Um, obviously all food related.
As we began to put a little plan together, it became apparent that the market I should aim for is the Greek one. So my new food blog is going to be in the Greek language. This may disappoint some of my (very few but loyal) readers, but it’s the sensible thing to do. The global food blogging scene is chockablock full of amazing websites, awesome writers, magnificent food photographers and downright genius recipe developers. Just the thought of trying to compete sends me running for the hills… Not that there aren’t some extremely talented Greek bloggers out there; I hope they’ll welcome me and share their knowledge and experience with me!
So, that’s what going on around here. My new site is being professionally designed and developed (gulp) and is looking really cool. Now I’m in a bit of a panic, trying to get my head together to produce some half-decent content to match the design. It’s crazy scary. But crazy exciting. Wish me luck! Oh and in case you are wondering, On Top Of Spaghetti will continue to exist and I will try my best to post as regularly as possible. If I disappear for a while please be patient, I will surely turn up at some point!
The recipe I’m posting today is something I developed myself, in an effort to copy a dessert I had while out with my auntie in London. We went for a lovely dinner to her local Thai restaurant, somewhere she goes very often with her grandsons. My auntie hates sweets (I know… even ice-cream… I don’t get it…) but she strongly recommended the Funky Pie as it’s what the boys always always end their meal with. Can I just say? My nephews know a good dessert when they see one. I bring to you, my version of The Funky Pie. (I still can’t believe how close I got to the real thing!)
“Funky Pie” with a no bake cookie ice-cream cup
150g digestive biscuits or graham crackers
50g plus 4-6 tsp roasted hazelnuts, chopped (I prepped 100g total and had lots leftover)
70g butter, melted
4 good scoops of vanilla ice cream
4 Tbs dulce de leche or caramel sauce
4 squirts whipped cream from a can (sometimes you just have to go there)
1. Whizz biscuits and 50g of chopped hazelnuts in a food processor till fine. Mix in the melted butter and use your hands to incorporate. You want the mixture to hold when you squeeze some in your hand. Sort of wet-sandy texture.
2. Cut 4 strips of grease proof paper, about 4-5cm width. Each strip should be long enough to line the base and two sides of a shallow ramekin with both ends hanging over the sides. You will use this as a handle to pull out the biscuit (cookie) cup when set. Very lightly grease 4 ramekins and line as described (I used the few drops of butter that were left in the saucer after melting it).
3. Put some crumb mixture into each ramekin and press into place with your fingers, along the bottom and up the sides as best you can. The aim is to create a cup which will later hold the ice cream. Pay attention to the corners around the bottom, pressing in with your fingers. This is quite a faffy step, but it’s the only one that requires any sort of effort! So be patient, it’s worth it. Add more biscuit mixture as you work, building up the sides. Note: With this amount of crumb mixture my fourth cup had shorter sides. Pop each ramekin into the freezer as you complete it.
4. Take out the vanilla ice-cream and let it soften for a few minutes. Don’t let it melt, or it will crystallise when freezing again. You want it just soft enough to be pliable and squish-able. Squish it into the biscuit cups inside the ramekins. Put back in the freezer.
5. When ready to serve, pull the paper “levers” up gently so the cup is released from the ramekin. Place on a plate. Spread the top with dulce de leche or caramel sauce. If you want to be fancy you can use a piping bag, unless you are using sauce in a squeezy bottle in which case your life is much easier at this point.
6. Sprinkle chopped hazelnuts on top of the sauce. You can add other nuts here as well, peanuts would probably be nice (salted… to go with the caramel… you know… salted caramel… why did I only just think of that?)
7. Squirt the whipped cream on top of all that. Serve with a fork as well as a spoon, the biscuit can be a bit hard to dig into!
Note: Of course you can use this as a base and let your imagination run riot. Different flavour ice-cream, different sauces (chocolate, sour cherry etc.), different nuts. Whatever you fancy. It’s all good.
Turns out this has been done before..! (but in baked versions)
Chocolate Chip Cookie Ice Cream Cups from Chocolate-Covered Katie (a healthy version)
Chocolate Cookie Ice Cream Bowls by Kirbie’s Cravings
Edible Ice Cream Bowls: Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies by Gluten Free on a Shoestring