Melt Away Pie was a mysterious concept to me. It sounded like a soufflé with a crust, or maybe a meringue topped custard thing, but the idea of it being “ice cream pie” never occurred to me, maybe because it’s so simple. This is basically a champion pie recipe if you hate baking. You take a pie crust, add your favorite sauce, top with ice cream, top with whipped cream, garnish with some business, and boom – dessert that looks super effortful. For the sake of maintaining my food blogger credentials, I’ve over complicated this simple concept by making my own ice cream, caramel, and crust, but seriously, it is almost impossible for this idea not taste good, so do whatever you please. Enjoy!
For one 9 inch pie
1 recipe pretzel graham crust (recipe below)
1 cup salted caramel sauce (recipe below)
8 cups bourbon ice cream, softened (recipe below)
or just stir together vanilla ice cream with a tablespoon of bourbon, and let it firm up in the freezer.
2 cups cocoa whipped cream (recipe below)
1/4 cup chopped pecans
To make the pie, pour about 3/4 cup of caramel sauce in the bottom of the crust, and top with bourbon ice cream. Smooth the ice cream over the pie and pop in the freezer to set, about 30 minutes but you can leave it there longer if you want. You can do two things regarding serving: serve it with fresh whipped cream or with frozen whipped cream. Either way, top the set pie with cocoa whipped cream. If serving immediately, add chopped pecans and the remaining 1/4 cup of caramel sauce. If freezing again, reserve the toppings until just before you serve. Enjoy!
A fully baked crust can get hard in the freezer, so I par bake mine. You can also skip the baking process all together and just use raw crust.
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 cup pretzel crumbs
1/2 cup sugar
12 tablespoons unsalted butter
Preheat oven to 350F.
Combine all of the ingredients in a food processor (or with your hands) until evenly distributed and clumping a bit. Spread evenly into a 9 inch pie or tart pan, patting down with your hands. Pop in the oven and bake for 5 minutes, until deeper in color. Remove from the oven and cool on the counter completely.
INGREDIENTS (SALTED CARAMEL SAUCE)
Makes 2 cups
1 cup white sugar
4 ounces unsalted butter
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
Heat the sugar in a saucepan over medium heat, until the sugar turns golden. Stir until all of the sugar is dissolved and just starting to turn a lovely amber color.
Turn heat to low, add the butter, and stir to combine. Careful, it’ll foam up. Then add the heavy cream, vanilla extract, and salt stirring to combine. You’ll cook the sauce for about 5-10 minutes, until it comes together. It’ll take quite a bit of stirring!
Pour the caramel into a glass jar, let it come to room temperature, and store in the fridge for up to two weeks. Pour over everything and anything!
INGREDIENTS (BOURBON ICE CREAM)
Makes 2 pints
4 ounces butter, browned
3 cups half and half
3 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 tablespoon bourbon
Melt the butter in a small pot over medium heat until it becomes golden brown. Remove from the heat and allow the butter to cool to room temperature.
In a large pot, bring the half and half up to a simmer. Meanwhile, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar and salt until smooth. To temper the eggs, carefully whisk about 1 cup of the hot half-and-half into the egg mixture until smooth. Then whisk the egg mixture back into the half-and-half in the pot. Return to medium-low heat and cook to 170°F, constantly stirring along the bottom of the pot to ensure even cooking. Once it has reached 170°F, remove from the heat and whisk in the bourbon and brown butter. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl. Cool the ice cream base, in its bowl, to room temperature in an ice bath, then pop the base into the fridge to fully chill, at least 2 hours.
Once the base is chilled, process it in your ice cream maker. When it’s somewhere between soft serve and ice cream from the freezer, transfer the ice cream to a container and freeze until firm.
INGREDIENTS (COCOA WHIPPED CREAM)
1 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Combine everything in a bowl, and whip until soft peaks form.