Childhood Memories

Rattlesnake Club's Chris Franz puts grown-up spin on the ice cream 'sammy'


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"I love cookies and I really love ice cream," says executive chef Chris Franz of the Rattlesnake Club. And with ice cream sandwiches, he gets both. "My mom used to make them for my sisters and I — chocolate chip cookies with vanilla — and my daughters have had make-your-own ice cream sammy parties as well." The pomegranate touch goes back to his grandmother, who called them Indian apples. "We used to eat the seeds every fall and winter. None of my friends had ever tried them before so it was fun to show them what they look like when cut open — and how to smack the seeds out." The gluten-free aspect is another twist, which Franz originally tested for a friend with celiac disease. "This is my grown-up version of a childhood favorite," he says.

Gluten-Free Flourless Chocolate Chip Cookie and Ginger-Pomegranate Ice Cream Sandwiches (Serves 8-12)

ICE CREAM:

3 cups heavy cream
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 4-inch piece ginger root, peeled and coarsely
chopped
6 eggs
½ cup pomegranate seeds

Directions:
In a medium saucepan, combine the cream, ½ cup sugar, vanilla extract, and ginger. Bring to a boil;  turn off the heat and let sit for 1 hour. In a small bowl, combine the eggs and remaining ½ cup sugar. Beat to a homogeneous consistency. Bring the cream-ginger mixture back to a boil and turn heat off. Immediately strain and whisk a third of the cream mixture into the egg-sugar mixture, then immediately whisk the egg mixture back into the remaining cream mixture. Chill over an ice water bath. Fold in the pomegranate seeds. Churn chilled mixture in an ice cream machine according to the manufacturer's directions. Keep frozen until ready to serve.

COOKIES:

3 cups powdered sugar
½ cup, plus 3 tablespoons unsweetened
cocoa powder
¼ teaspoon salt
2 ½ cups chocolate chips
4 egg whites
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Directions:
Position two racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven; heat to 350 degrees. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper. Mix sugar, cocoa, and salt in a bowl. Stir in chocolate chips. Add egg whites and vanilla; mix with a fork or electric mixer on medium until batter is just moistened. (Do not overbeat or batter will stiffen.) With a teaspoon, drop batter onto baking sheets in evenly spaced mounds. Bake until tops are lightly cracked and glossy, about 15 minutes. Cool briefly, and then carefully remove with a spatula. Carefully lift cookies and place on racks to cool. Do not wait too long to remove from baking sheets; they'll stick, even to parchment. Repeat with remaining batter. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.

Assembly:
Place a medium-sized scoop of slightly softened ice cream in the center of the bottom of one cookie. Top with another cookie and serve immediately. If you build ahead, wrap in parchment and store in freezer. Allow to sit 5 minutes before serving.

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