My older son likes to eat just a few things, and I count us both lucky that strawberries are one of them. They're portable, delicious and a special treat when in season.
Though they don't need a thing to make them great, it's fun to find new ways to use them. They're a kid-friendly addition to salads (try with a little bit of goat cheese on spinach), a classic with biscuits and whipped cream, and a natural in fruit salad, too.
If you'd like to whip up something festive and fun, give these ice cream sandwiches a try. They're best if you eat them right away, but you can also freeze them for later. We made ours with buttery, delicate oatmeal cookies and vanilla ice cream.
Lemon Oatmeal Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches with Fresh Strawberries
- 1 pint strawberries
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper (optional, but adds a nice zing)
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest or lemon extract
- 2 sticks softened unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cups sugar (you can substitute brown sugar for all or part)
- 2 eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 1/2 cups oatmeal
- 1 pint vanilla ice cream
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two cookie sheets and set aside.
- Gently rinse, dry and quarter the strawberries and set them aside.
- Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and black pepper (if using) in a small bowl.
- In a medium bowl, beat the lemon zest or extract, butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla until thoroughly combined. Add the flour mixture, mix well, then add the oatmeal.
- Using a 2-tablespoon-sized scoop, place six rounded scoops on the prepared baking sheet. Keeping the scoops evenly sized and rounded will result in more uniform cookies that will pair up easily into sandwiches.
- Bake one sheet at a time for 12 to 15 minutes or until just golden brown. Remove carefully with a spatula since they'll be a bit brittle. Let cool thoroughly on a rack.
- While the cookies bake, take the ice cream out of the freezer to sit at room temperature until it reaches a spreadable consistency.
- Once the cookies have cooled, find pairs that are closest in size and shape. Take one cookie and spread with about 3 teaspoons of ice cream.
- Place the berry pieces around the outside of the cookie and push into the ice cream, trying to keep the mixture flattened so the other cookie can sit neatly on top. Gently press a cookie on top to get it to stick. Eat right away or freeze for later. (If you freeze, thaw sandwiches for five to 10 minutes, allowing them to soften before eating.)
Cooking time: 1 hour.
Serves: 10 people.
Cheryl Herrick is a writer and blogger who lives in Burlington with her two young sons. Visit crankycakes.com for more of her adventures in food and mom life.