Happy Cinco de Mayo everyone! Fried Ice Cream has been something I have always wanted to make, but was always a bit intimated. I thought Cinco de Mayo was the perfect opportunity to finally cross it off the bucket list. Fried Ice Cream is an American creation from the late 1800s often found in Mexican American restaurants. There is also a popular tempura variation in Japanese American restaurants.
The ice cream actually wasn’t too difficult to recreate! The hardest part was working fast enough while also taking photos. If you like to move slowly, Keep the baking sheet in the freezer and work with one scoop of ice cream at a time. I think this is one of the more challenging foods I have had the pleasure of photographing. I could see the puddle of ice cream getting larger with each shot. The trick is to make sure the ice cream is completely frozen between each of the steps. After the final step, make sure the ice cream stays in the freezer for at least 2 hours before frying. Overnight works even better.
I used a food processor and gently pulsed to crush the cornflakes. You want them small, but not completely in crumbs to keep some texture. You can also place them in a ziploc bag and use a rolling pin or mallet to crush.
For those wanting to avoid coconut, vanilla cookie crumbs or nuts (I would love to try this with almond) would make a great replacement.
I served a few ice cream scoops with honey and others with chocolate sauce. I personally preferred the honey. It complemented the ice cream and hint of cinnamon perfectly. Speaking of cinnamon, I think this would also be great with a cinnamon ice cream instead of vanilla.
1 quart vanilla ice cream
5 cups cornflakes, crushed
1 cup shredded unsweetened or sweetened coconut
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoon milk
peanut or vegetable oil for frying
Hot Chocolate Sauce
Line a baking sheet with parchment.
Use a large ice cream scoop or spoon to scoop out heaping 1/2 cup balls of ice cream. If desired, use your hands to smooth the ball before placing on prepared baking sheet. Place in freezer for at least 2 hours.
In a wide bowl, mix together cornflakes, coconut, and cinnamon. Working quickly, roll each ball of ice cream in the mixture, pressing to push in the coating and smooth further. Place in freezer for at least 30 minutes.
In another wide bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar, and milk. Thoroughly cover a ball in the egg mixture, shaking off any excess, then completely coat in cornflake mixture. Repeat with remaining ice cream. Place in freezer for at least 2 hours.
Fill a heavy bottomed saucepan with 3 inches of oil and heat to 400 degrees F. Once thoroughly heated, fry the ice cream just until golden, about 20 seconds. Immediately remove to a towel lined plate just long enough to drain excess oil and serve immediately with whipped cream and honey or hot chocolate sauce.