Cinnamon shortbread, chocolate jalapeno ice cream

A few weeks ago, while Alex-the-Brazilian was visiting our fair district, we had a get-together that both celebrated his presence and put him to work cooking for everybody.

The food was ah-mah-zing and a good time was had by all. The next day I did a quick survey to tally up what food was left over, and realized that while most of the Brazilian fish stew and spiced baby octopi were consumed, the apartment’s inventory of wine had skyrocketed.

Almost everybody brought a bottle of wine with them. Ten people don’t actually consume that much wine, especially when Brazilian cocktails were flowing as well. Farrell and I have managed to re-gift some of those bottles at subsequent dinner parties (that’s fair game, right?)…but I think there’s still a rose or two languishing in the fridge.

Although, some wonderful human being also blessed us with ice cream. Three pints of premium gelato and ice creams appeared in our freezer, and surprisingly, were not completely devoured by the end of the night. Farrell and I didn’t let the espresso and dulce de leche flavors survive for much longer, but I had to get creative with the last pint:

Chocolate jalapeno

At first taste, it’s your typical premium quality chocolate ice cream. Rich and creamy, a good mouth feel, chocolate that is neither too sweet nor bitter.

Then it hits…a spicy sensation that doesn’t quite singe your tongue, but fills your mouth with pure heat.

(btw, those bitty bottles of Tabasco are saved from MREs I got at Ft Benning last September…mmm, good memories!)

I wanted to make ice cream sandwiches with a cookie that could stand up to the unique spiciness of this ice cream, and these cinnamon shortbreads definitely give the jalapeno a comparable kick.

Truthfully, I couldn’t handle the heat, and much preferred my ice cream sandwiches with blood orange sorbet. Whichever kind of ice cream you have on hand, I’m sure these shortbreads will complement it wonderfully.

Perfect snacks, whether the heat is coming from the sun or your ice cream.

– Cinnamon Shortbread – Adapted from Pease Pudding
1 cup + 1 tbsp flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup + 2 tbsp powdered sugar
8 tbsp (one stick) butter, firm but not too cold, cubed
1/2 tbsp ground cinnamon

– Sift flour, baking powder, salt, powdered sugar and cinnamon into a bowl. Rub butter cubes into flour mixture to form a cohesive dough. There should not be noticeable chunks of any one ingredient
– Form dough into a log and wrap in parchment paper or plastic wrap. Let rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
– Preheat oven to 325 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or silpat.
– Slice dough into 1/4 inch thick discs and bake for about 19-21 minutes. Let cool completely before assembling ice cream sandwiches.