- 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
- 2 (3.5 ounce) bars high-quality semisweet or dark chocolate, chopped
- 3 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 6 tablespoons salted butter
- 2 quarts vanilla ice cream (4 pints), softened
- 3 cups mini pretzel twists
- 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
- 1 to 3 tablespoons confectioners' sugar, to your taste
Step 1: Line an 8-inch square cake pan with parchment paper, leaving a 6-inch overhang on two sides, or use an 8-inch springform pan. Chill in the freezer for at least 15 minutes.
Step 2: Meanwhile, make the fudge sauce. In a medium saucepan, combine the sweetened condensed milk, chocolate, 2 teaspoons of the vanilla, and 3 tablespoons of the butter. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes or until the butter and chocolate are melted and the sauce is smooth. Remove from the heat. Let cool, 10 to 15 minutes.
Step 3: Press 2 pints of the softened ice cream into the chilled pan. Swirl in half of the fudge sauce, then top with an even layer of pretzels, about 1 cup. Freeze for 1 hour. Repeat with remaining 2 pints of ice cream, remaining fudge sauce (re-warm if needed to loosen it), and end with a layer of pretzels, about 1 cup. Cover the cake with plastic wrap and freeze until completely firm, at least 8 hours or overnight.
Step 4: Lift the cake out of the pan using the parchment paper overhang and place it on a serving plate. Freeze for another 30 minutes to reset or until ready to serve.
Step 5: Meanwhile, crush the remaining 1 cup of pretzels into crumbs. In a skillet, melt the remaining 3 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Allow the butter to brown until it smells toasted and is a deep golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the pretzels and cook another minute, until toasted. Remove from the heat and transfer the crumbs to a plate. Let cool.
Step 6: Just before serving, whip the cream. In a medium bowl, using a handheld mixer, whip the cream until soft peaks form. Add the confectioners’ sugar and remaining 1 teaspoon vanilla and whip until combined. Top the cake with the whipped cream and sprinkle it with the toasted pretzel crumbs. Serve immediately.
Enjoy this salty-sweet ice cream cake from HalfBakedHarvest!