Fried ice cream is the dessert par excellence of Chinese cuisine. Famous throughout the world, it is a dessert loved by adults and children thanks to the crunchy batter that wraps a cold heart of ice cream. In short, it is warm outside and cold inside, for a result that will leave you literally speechless. Even if the process is quite long, fried ice cream can be easily prepared even at home. About the ingredients, you will need crustless bread, flour type 00, sparkling water and oil for frying.
First of all, with a spoon place a scoop of ice cream on a sheet of transparent film. Choose the taste you like best. Roll the ice cream scoop into the film and shape it with your hands. Once you have finished this operation, put the ice cream scoop in the freezer, where it will remain for at least two hours.
After this time, necessary to make it harden, take the scoop of ice cream out of the freezer. Then take the crustless bread, stretch it out with a rolling pin and use it to cover the frozen scoop after removing the film that surrounds it. Be careful not to leave any holes. Instead of the crustless bread you can also use slices of sponge cake. Once you have finished this operation, cover the scoop with new film and put it back in the freezer for a couple of hours waiting for it to become hard.
Meanwhile, prepare the batter: blend the flour with the sparkling water and you’re done. Remove the scoops of ice cream from the freezer, remove the film and then pass them in the batter before starting to fry them. The ice cream scoops must remain in the hot peanut oil just few seconds, the time to brown, so you will be able to get a warm and crispy shell while the inside will remain cold and creamy.
Serve your homemade Chinese fried ice cream decorating it with melted chocolate or confectioner’s sugar, if you wish. You can preserve the ice cream scoops in the freezer for up to 3 months.
If you have more time, you can make a batter using water, potato starch, sifted baking powder and sifted flour, to be mixed with a whisk to avoid lumps. This mixture should rest in the fridge at least for one night in a bowl covered with film.
Origin and tradition of fried ice cream
Fried ice cream is a typical dessert of Chinese cuisine, whose origins are very ancient. The first evidence of this dish dates back to 1800. Crispy outside and fluffy inside, it is an obligatory dish to taste if you go eating in an oriental restaurant, and it is very widespread even in Japanese restaurants. This dish can be easily replicated even at home, having some time available. The real secret is the batter, very thick and frothy, whose cooking in boiling oil must be light and right. Also important is the imagination of the chef, who can enrich the dessert with whipped cream and flavor it with cinnamon biscuits, ginger and candied fruit.