Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Chopped Challenge #7: Apple Cobbler with Peanut Butter-Cinnamon Ice Cream

For our seventh Chopped challenge, Justin decided to give me cinnamon, pancake mix, half-and-half, and Peanut Butter Captain Crunch. Taking the obvious route, I chose to make a dessert. (We had salads for dinner, in case you're curious.) Cinnamon and peanut butter both made me think of apples, so I settled on making an apple pie. I used green apples because I like the bit of sourness paired with all that sugar, but you can use your favorite apples instead.

Initially I wanted to grind the Peanut Butter Captain Crunch in my food processor to use it in a graham cracker-like crust, but I wasn't sure how well that would work out when baking with a bit of a runny filling in it. Graham cracker crusts are usually used for thicker fillings like pudding or cheesecake, and so I wasn't sure if the crust would get soggy from the apple filling. Instead, I decided to combine the pancake mix and the ground cereal in a streusel-style topping.

Everyone knows that hot apple pie/cobbler needs to be eaten a la mode, so I also made some peanut butter-cinnamon ice cream that I thought would tie the flavors together nicely. We weren't huge fans of the ice cream by itself--it was just ok--but on top of the cobbler, it was really spectacular. I would definitely make this dessert again.


Ice Cream
2 cups half-and-half
1 cup sugar
2 large egg yolks
1/2 cup peanut butter
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Apple Cobbler
4 medium-sized green apples
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tablespoon flour
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup water
3/4 cup pancake mix
3/4 cup ground Peanut Butter Captain Crunch
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup butter


To make ice cream, combine half-and-half and sugar in a saucepan and heat to simmering over medium heat, stirring frequently. Beat two eggs yolks in a separate bowl. When half-and-half mixture is simmering, slowly drizzle 1/2 cup of mixture into egg yolks while whisking vigorously. Pour egg mixture into pan with remaining half-and-half mixture. Reduce heat to medium-low and continue cooking, stirring constantly, until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.

Meanwhile, melt peanut butter by microwaving until hot and runny. Remove pan from heat and stir in melted peanut butter, cinnamon, and vanilla extract. Pour mixture into a bowl and refrigerate until cold. Pour cooled mixture into ice cream maker, and freeze according to manufacturer's directions. Store ice cream in freezer until ready to serve.

For the cobbler, core and slice apples, and layer slices in a 9" x 9" baking pan. Mix together sugar, flour, and cinnamon, and sprinkle over apples. Pour the water over the top, moistening all of the dry ingredients.

Combine pancake mix, ground Peanut Butter Captain Crunch, brown sugar, baking soda, and butter in a food processor, and pulse until crumbly. Sprinkle all of this mixture over the top of the apple filling. Bake at 350 F for 30-40 minutes. Serve cobbler hot with ice cream scooped on top.

Servings: 6

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