cjr has grown very fond of marzipan stollen from Trader Joe's. Marzipan Stollen is a christmas 'bread' common in Germany. It's kind of like a sweet challah with mixed in candied/dried fruit as well as a thick strip of marzipan running down the middle. Personally, I don't much care for raisins or artificial candied fruit which rules out just about all commercial versions. Usually, I make my own. However, this year I'm nursing a broken shoulder until just about Christmas-time, so baking bread is out of the question. Ice cream, on the other hand, is easily doable with just one arm.
So here is my marzipan stollen flavored ice cream. I adapted a recipe for Pan Forte ice cream from David Lebovitz's Perfect Scoop - one of my favorite/most used cookbooks - since I couldn't find a decent recipe online.
If you don't have an ice cream maker, this recipe can be easily approximated by getting a pint of good vanilla ice cream, prepping just the fillings, and using the ice cream/mix-in layering technique in step 3 on from the 2nd day. You went get the nice spiced/orange-y custard as the base though, which I think gives it a more authentic taste.
As for the marzipan, make sure you're getting marzipan and not just almond paste (which will be too soft/liquidy). I make my own by sending a roughly equal amount of peeled almonds and powdered sugar through a meat grinder and adding enough almond flavored simple syrup to reach a marzipan-y consistency. I chose to color my marzipan in festive multicolors, but plain will do just fine as you'll get some color just from using the soaked fruits.
When arranging the layers, make sure not to disturb the dried fruits too much or else their colors will bleed into the frozen custard.
It really does taste like Marzipan Stollen in ice cream form!
For the mix ins:
1 cup mixed dried fruit/berries (such as raisins, currants, cherries, blueberries, cranberries, etc)
1 cup marzipan, cut into half inch cubes.
1/4 cup candied orange peel, cut into tiny bits (~1/8 inch cubes)
For the base:
1 cup half-and-half
2 cinnamon sticks, broken in half
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cloves
peel from 1 large orange (use a veggie peeler to get wide pieces)
2/3 cup sugar
4 egg yolks
3 tablespoons honey
2 cups heavy cream
Place any required items in freezer for your ice cream maker.
Prep the mix ins:
1. In a bowl place dried fruit and add just enough brandy to cover the fruit. Place in fridge, covered to soak.
2. (Optional but suggested) Place the marzipan bits in the freezer separated on a cookie sheet to get cold overnight.
Prep the base:
1. Warm the half and half, sugar, spices, and orange peel in a small saucepan until the sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and allow to steep for 30 min.
2. Place the cream in a large bowl and place a thin mesh strainer over the cream.
3. Rewarm the mixture. In another bowl, whisk the yolks. Then add some of the warmed mixture to the yolks, slowly, and while whisking constantly.
4. Scrape all the yolk mixture back into the saucepan.
5. Heat the mixture gently, constantly whisking, until the custard thickens and coats the back of a spoon.
6. Pour the mixture through the strainer and into the cream. Discard any spice bits, orange peel, or gunk that remains.
7. Warm the honey (I used the microwave for about 15-20 seconds) and then stir it into the rest of the custard base.
8. Chill the base in the refrigerator over night.
1. Churn the ice cream as per the instructions of your machine.
2. While churning, strain off any excess brandy from the fruit. Press gently to get any that have over-soaked.
3. When churned, place about 1/4 of the ice cream in a wide container and spread evenly. Sprinkle 1/3 of the brandied fruit, marzipan chunks, and candied orange.
4. Add another 1/4 of the ice cream and repeat the layering process. Try not to move the fruit to much or the color will bleed.
5. In the end you should have 4 layers of ice cream base + 3 layers of fillings in between.
6. Place a piece of wax paper over the surface to prevent freezer burn, place the container lid tightly, and freeze overnight.