OK, get ready for a long post. This was pretty easy to assemble, but did have several steps. My parents birthdays are only 1 week (well, and 7 years) apart, so I wanted to make them a cake. But, I wanted something cool for us to enjoy!
Icebox cake to the rescue! Icebox cake uses crackers or thin wafer type cookies between layers of mousse or fudge. They soften up in the icebox and become a great cake-like substance over time. Look at that ooey, gooey goodness!
And those layers of graham crackers, peanut butter pudding and chocolate pudding? Yum!And yep, those are snowmen paper plates. And this was July 1, at about 95 degrees. Ha, ha. But, I keep it real – we use paper plates, Tupperware and sometimes nice plates. Keep it simple!
Before I get to the recipe, can you get a load of these two? Ha ha ha! Mr. FeistyEats is certain Brinklie (cat) tries to be like the dog. Winston sat down here and she came over and sat just like him! notice their front paws are even curled up the same. Too cute. Definitely a love-hate relationship!
After Googling icebox cakes – one of the most gorgeous ones that came up was this Snickers Icebox Cake. I love Snickers and had to make this. I am posting her recipe here with notes I found. My cake turned out pretty great, but her photos and cake are just amazing!
Makes one 8×8 cake or two 4×8 cake loafs
- 1 box of graham crackers (an 8×8 cake pan will hold 4 1/2 crackers per layer)
- 2/3 cup cornstarch
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 6 cups cold whole milk
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 3/4 cups dark chocolate, chopped
- 3/4 cups creamy peanut butter
- 1 cup sugar
- 6 tablespoons water
- 4 tablespoon butter
- ¼ c heavy cream
Ganache pouring sauce
- 2/3 cups dark chocolate
- 1 tablespoons heavy cream
- 4 tablespoons powdered sugar, sifted
- 4-5 tablespoons water, warm
- 12-14 mini Snickers, chopped
To make pudding
- Combine cornstarch, sugar, salt and milk in a blender or food processor and pulse until well blended. Alternatively, combine all ingredients in a bowl and whisk vigorously. Transfer mixture to a heat proof bowl and place over (not on) simmering water for approximately 20-25 minutes stirring occasionally. Pudding is ready when it it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon and leave ribbons when pudding is drizzled on top of itself. *Please see my note below on this – this was the only part of the recipe I had trouble with.
- Add vanilla to mixture. Split mixture in half and add chocolate to one half and whisk to combine. Add peanut butter to remaining half and whisk to combine.
To make caramel sauce
- Place sugar and water into a saucepan over medium low heat and stir the until sugar has dissolved. Dissolve any crystals forming on the side with a wet pastry brush.
- Once sugar has dissolved increase heat to high.
- At this point do not stir the mixture directly. Now and then, using the handle, give the pot a swirl to keep the mixture moving. The mixture will start to bubble after a minute or so.
- Once the mixture starts to turn a light golden shade, add the butter and heavy cream. The mixture will bubble wildly. Whisk to combine (bubbles will subside upon cooling). Set aside to cool completely.
To make ganache pouring sauce
- Place chocolate and heavy cream in a bowl over simmering water. Let chocolate and cream sit for 2-3 minutes to melt without stirring. Then slowly stir mixture to combine. Add powdered sugar and mix to combine. Add water 1 tablespoon at a time, mixing after each addition until pouring consistency is reached. Set aside and let sauce cool to warm.
- Create a foil sling by placing a piece foil in the pan with a 1 inch overhang on each side.
- Place graham crackers side-by-side until bottom of pan is covered. Spread a thin layer of chocolate pudding on top. Place second layer of graham cracker on top of chocolate pudding. Spread a thin layer of peanut butter pudding on top. Continue alternating layers with chocolate and peanut butter pudding while separating each pudding layer with a graham cracker layer. End with a pudding layer on top.
- Pour cooled caramel sauce on top and set aside to set. Pour cooled ganache sauce on top and add chopped Snickers on top. Finish with caramel and chocolate drizzle.
- Place cake in refrigerator or freezer for at least 8 hours to set or overnight. (Freezer will create a pudding texture closer to ice cream).
This recipe uses homemade pudding. This was a first for me. I have never made homemade pudding. Not surprisingly, it is far superior to the purchased kind. I was a huge fan! Please note – this filled up my processor to the brim. I had a little spillage!
*This was the only step I had a problem with or disagreed with. The recipe calls to place a bowl over simmering water for 20-25 minutes. Try about 3 times that long. I was very frustrated. I would change this to say place pudding over boiling water, whisk fairly continuously and you might get pudding in 25 minutes. Eventually, that is what worked for me.
Once your milk becomes pudding; divide it and flavor one with peanut butter and one with dark chocolate chips.
Alternately layer the puddings with crackers. I made my pudding the evening before and gave it a night to cool and set even more.
The caramel sauce came together quite easily. Just keep your eye on the sugar water when it boils and becomes golden.
The ganache came together easy and quickly as well. Make sure your cake is frozen when you are ready to top it.
Caramel and then chocolate.
Top with chopped Snickers and then drizzle with remaining caramel and chocolate. Set in freezer overnight (I did two nights) and it sets up great like ice cream almost.
Look at this gloriousness!
This is a tall cake!