Chonky Boys: The Chocolate Chip Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches that Scream Summer!

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Featuring my thick and nuggy Chonky Boy Chocolate Chip Cookies, these ice cream sandwiches are the stuff that summer dreams are made of.  If you've ever had the Cookie Ice Cream Sandwich at Disneyland , you are going to LOVE these! 

These big and bold chocolate chip cookies are based on a recipe from my culinary school studies at Auguste Escoffier, but with a few modifications to give them that Jennuine touch.  They make the perfectas book for a fat slice of real vanilla bean ice cream.  And those mini chips?  You just gotta have that extra cronch!

Thank goodness this recipe only makes 8 sandwiches, otherwise I would be eating them for breakfast lunch and dinner.  This way, my big family can help save me from my inner child diet-saboteur.  
PrintWith ImageWithout Image Chonky Boy Chocolate Chip Cookie Ice Cream SandwichesYield: 8Author: Jenn Erickson Loaded with chocolate chips and buttery, brown-sugary vanilla flavor, these mall-sized cookies form a perfect partnership with a fat wedg…

Waiter! There's a BABY in my cake! -- or -- IT MUST BE THREE KINGS DAY

Today we are celebrating the 12th Day of Christmas.  I'm nursing a tremendous migraine, so fortunately, this does not mean that our true love will be bestowing the gift of "twelve drummers drumming".  What it does mean is that today my family and I will celebrate Three Kings Day; also know as Epiphany or Twelfth Night.


This Christian holiday celebrates the day that the three wise men brought gifts to the baby Jesus. The legendary visit later gave rise to the custom of gift giving at Christmas on the Feast of the Epiphany, today traditionally observed on January 6.

In Germany, where my father's family originated, children go from house to house on Epiphany eve, singing carols and chalking the year and initials KMB (those of the kings, Kaspar, Melchior and Balthasar), near the entrance of each home. The festive Dreikonigskuchen or Three Kings Cake is also served that night to celebrate the occasion.


Since childhood I have relished all the magic and pageantry that comes with holiday celebrations, and have also been intrigued by family history, heritage, and culture.  Any opportunity to make a little magic ~ transforming an ordinary day into an extraordinary day of joy and memory-making is an opportunity best seized in my book.  So as a parent, I have made considerable effort to learn more about the traditions and celebrations of my and my husband's ancestors, and integrated them into our lives in the present day. 

On years where January 6 falls on a weekend, we host a big party for all our friends, family and neighbors where we serve a traditional New Orlean's style King Cake.  In keeping with the tradition, the guest that finds the little baby jesus charm in his/her piece of cake is crowned King or Queen of the day and is given a hand-made crown to wear.  In years where the holiday is on a weekday, we find a way to integrate the celebration in to an activity at school, or let the girls choose a few friends to have over in the evening.  This year, we brought the party to my daughter's preschool.  The children helped me prepare a humongous King Cake, which was enjoyed by all.

The tradition of the King Cake is popular in France, Belgium, Switzerland, Portugal, Spain, Greece, and Bulgaria, to name a few. In the United States, the King Cake is part of the Mardi Gras season traditions. Each country has it’s own recipe for the King Cake, varying from the French Galette de Rois with Puff Pastry and Almond filling, to the Louisana version which more closely resembles a ring of broiche. Despite regional differences, what these special cakes have in common is that they all have a small trinket (often a small plastic baby, sometimes said to represent Baby Jesus) inside, and the person who gets the piece of cake with the trinket has various privileges and obligations. The traditional trinket in the cake is a bean, still seen in some European and Mexican traditions but rare in U.S. king cakes.

I’ve taken some liberties with the traditional Louisiana style King Cake, to make it more family friendly, and fun to prepare as a group. Borrowing from the Mardi Gras tradition, we top our King Cake with sprinkles in green, purple, and gold: Green representing “Faith”, Purple representing “Justice”, and Gold representing “Power”. It is also said that these three colors represent the gifts of the Magi: Gold, Incense and Myrrh.  The cake is baked in a bundt pan, giving it its characteristic ring shape, representing a crown.

This tradition is a wonderful way to round-out the Christmas season, continue the joy, honor our culture, history, and for those of the Christian faith, to further celebrate the savior's birth.
King Cake
(adapted from my grandmother's recipe for monkey bread)


3 tubes refrigerator biscuits (small, buttermilk)
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 cup melted butter (2 sticks), plus extra for buttering the pan
1 trinket  (we use a plastic baby, which I promise you does not melt)
purple, gold, and green sprinkles
icing (recipe below)


Preheat oven to 375.


Butter the inside of a bundt pan.


Open biscuit tubes.  Cut each biscuit in half and gently squeeze into a rough ball shape.  Children can do this with safety scissors.


In a medium bowl, combine sugars and cinnamon.

In a separate bowl, melt butter.


A handful at a time, dip biscuit balls in melted butter. 
Transfer to sugar bowl and toss to coat.


Place sugared biscuits in buttered bundt pan.


Be sure to imbed your trinket into one of the biscuit pieces before dipping and rolling in sugar.  If serving a small group, and wanting to ensure that one guest gets the trinket, insert a toothpick in the area where it is hidden.  This way, you can be sure to serve from this portion of the cake first.


Continue until all biscuits have been buttered and sugared and placed evenly around the bundt pan.  Gently press down to help biscuits adhere to one another.  Pour remaining butter over the top of the biscuits.


Bake until biscuits rise and are golden brown (approx. 30 minutes).


Remove from oven and immediately invert cake on to a serving plate.


Drizzle with icing.
Icing:
  1. Melt 1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) of butter in a saucepan or microwave.
  2. Sift 2 cups of powdered sugar into a medium size bowl.
  3. Add the melted butter to the powdered sugar.
  4. Add 2 tablespoons of milk.
  5. Beat until smooth and creamy, adding a little more milk if necessary.
Sprinkle one third of cake with purple sprinkles, another third with gold, and the last with green.

 Serve.

The guest that finds the trinket becomes
"King" or "Queen" for the day. 


DO YOU CELEBRATE ON JANUARY 6?
PLEASE SHARE YOUR FAMILY TRADITIONS.

WHAT TRADITIONS FROM YOUR FAMILY HERITAGE
HAVE YOU CONTINUED WITH YOUR CHILDREN?

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