pretzel jello ice cream

Happy Spring!

I belong to this cloth diapering moms group on Facebook. This is the approximate content breakdown:

30% helpful information about wash routines and brand recommendations, 60% crazy people for whom cloth diapering appears to be their sole hobby, 7% true hippie moms trying to bully other women into believing that if you’re not co-sleeping with your infant you’re going against nature, and 3% photos of pregnancy tests with the caption “does this look positive to you?!?”

Anyway.

Last week a post popped up where a woman was ALL CAPS warning everyone that there was a person in the group posing as a mom who was actually a pedophile who had messaged her asking for naked photos of her baby. She urged the moderators of the group to do something about it. Even though I’ve never posted any pictures of Greta there my heart rate immediately spiked. She closed it out with “April Fools!!!”

I think it’s time for me to delete Facebook.

Fortunately my social media content that day wasn’t all bad, as Sheila forwarded me a post from Jeni’s ice cream announcing their new PRETZEL JELLO FLAVOR. I’m actually ashamed I hadn’t thought of this myself. So this weekend I got to work creating one of my own!

Pretzel Jello Ice Cream

for the ice cream base

1 cup heavy cream

2 cups whole milk

2/3 cup sugar

pinch of salt

6 egg yolks

1 brick softened cream cheese

for the strawberry swirl

1 lb strawberries (I used frozen)

for the pretzel crunch

1 1/2 cups pretzels

4 tablespoons melted butter

1-2 tablespoons sugar

I’ll admit this is probably an overnight project. First we assemble our ice cream base. I used my basic vanilla ice cream recipe but then added cream cheese to more closely resemble that middle layer of our beloved pretzel jello. Over medium-low heat, melt the sugar and pinch of salt into the cream and milk. Ladle some of that mixture into the egg yolks while whisking to temper the yolks, then add them to the pot. Continue to cook over low heat, stirring regularly. Break up the cream cheese and add that to the mixture. It will start to melt down a little bit. Once the mixture is steaming slightly and thickened, turn off the heat. I poured it into a bowl and used my immersion blender to make sure the cream cheese was fully incorporated. If you don’t have an immersion blender, carefully transfer to a regular blender or food processor and give it a quick whirl.

Cover with plastic wrap so the plastic wrap is touching the surface of your custard, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or overnight. Then you can transfer to your ice cream maker!

At some point while this is happening, you can cook the strawberries down. You can definitely use fresh, but you’re going to cook them alllll the way down so a 1 lb bag frozen worked great! I did let them defrost all the way before I cooked them. Just put them on the stove with a little bit of water and let them go. Once they’re done, let them cool completely.

You don’t want to mix the strawberries into your ice cream when it’s fresh out of the maker and soft-serve consistency, because then you just end up with strawberry ice cream. I really wanted this to me more like a strawberry swirl. So I moved my ice cream back to the freezer to let it harden up.

For the pretzel layer, I wanted to replicate the pretzel crust. Toss some pretzels- any kind will probably do, but definitely salted and on the thinner side- with melted butter and sugar. Spread on a baking sheet and put under the broiler or in the toaster oven. Just keep a close eye because they can burn quick! Not only does this make them taste like the pretzel jello crust, but the butter/sugar kind of caramelizes on them and prevents them from getting soggy in your ice cream! Break them into smaller chunks (I guess you could also do this before you toast them) and let them cool completely.

Then I went Coldstone Creamery vibes and cut everything together! Literally with a knife.

It is actual perfection. Jeni’s can go ahead and hire me now. It’s not overly sweet and has a good hint of salt. I’m going to have to start passing out cones on the corner so I don’t eat it all myself.

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