Daring Bakers: Swiss Swirl Ice Cream Cake

I'm on to my second Daring Kitchen challenge, which is on the baking side of things. The July 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Sunita of Sunita’s world – life and food. Sunita challenged everyone to make an ice-cream filled Swiss roll that’s then used to make a bombe with hot fudge. Her recipe is based on an ice cream cake recipe from Taste of Home. This has a few moving parts so it was recommended to do the challenge over two days. I'm no masochist so that's what I did, and I'm glad. First you need to make a swiss roll, then two flavors of ice cream and hot fudge sauce. Once the various components are ready you have to assemble it into a bombe. This was a good challenge for me since I haven't made a sponge cake swiss roll since my childhood days helping my mom make Bûche de Noël for Christmas, and I have never made ice cream before.

Cryogenic cookies

I love fresh-baked cookies. A lot of people do. I'm particularly stuck on the fresh-baked aspect and regular cookies which have been sitting around for a day or more are, well, just less interesting to me. I may poke at them out of boredom if I'm having a sweet craving. Store bought cookies in particular can sit on a counter for weeks without raising my interest. So I make my own cookies and gleefully eat them right out of the oven, but I also don't need to be wolfing down two dozen fresh cookies in one sitting. Years ago when I was in this quandary of how to make small batches, I decided that actually mixing up small batches was stupid and frustrating, so I turned to the master of food longevity: the freezer.

Cookie dough

Rise up! Rise up!

I am pretty big into baking. I love to start a day off with some fresh scones or whip up jalapeño cornbread for dinner. I do make yeast breads, but I spend most of my baking time making "quick" breads, those baked yummies that rely on baking powder and/or soda for leavening rather than the full action of yeast. One thing that I make everywhere I go is pancakes, which, while not baking, certainly relies on the same technique for getting that fluff. I have a basic recipe that just lives in my head and I can pull it together just about anywhere if I can get at the ingredients. When I first got to Ireland I was given pause though, because the flour in the kitchen was self-rising flour. I frowned. I'll mix my own leavening, thank-you-very-much. So, I went down to the store to get some "regular" flour and I discovered that in Ireland, self-rising is the norm. Whoa. I had to hunt around for anything that didn't say self-rising, and even when I did find that, I needed to read the ingredients because they would still have baking soda in them.

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