Croutons and beer in a dessert? Yup! I like to think of this as an ice cream sundae all grown up. It contains everything I want in a fall dessert in a shot glass. The pumpkin ice cream is silky, and all the spices add a warmth to it. The addition of bourbon adds a nice little kick giving the ice cream another layer of flavor that leaves you wanting more. It is divine all on its own, but why would I stop there?
Beer caramel sauce is so good, just give me a spoon and we’ll call it a day. This is a big statement coming from me because I don’t drink beer, but i do love to use it in cooking and baking. All I know is when you start a caramel sauce by reducing two bottles of Sam Adams Octoberfest something magical happens. I used Sam Adams Octoberfest which is a dark spiced ale because it has a richness that I knew would go perfectly with the pumpkin ice cream. Once I reduced it I added light brown sugar and butter and let it bubble away till it got thick and syrupy. Then I added heavy cream and let it bubble away again till it reached the consistency I was going for. I got all the flavor I wanted and the light brown sugar cut the bitterness without making it too sweet. It turned out thicker than a normal caramel sauce and created this wonderful candy beer blanket over the ice cream. Have I lured you in yet??
The last component of this dessert is the gingerbread croutons, and well, they just make me happy. The sundae needed a crunch factor so I toasted up some of my sweet & sassy gingerbread. I told you I had something in store for the gingerbread! When you toast the little cubes of gingerbread they get unbelievably buttery. They’re kind of like fabulous fall sprinkles, and they definitely take the sundae to a whole new level. I recommend making a lot of these, they’re a great little snack, and they disappear very quickly! Enjoy the video!
Video courtesy of How2Heroes
Pumpkin Ice Cream
- 1 cup milk
- 1 & 1/2 cups heavy cream
- 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
- 1t. cinnamon
- 1/4t. ground nutmeg
- 1/4t. ground ginger
- 1/4t. salt
- 5 egg yolks
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1t. vanilla extract
- 1T. Bourbon
- Bring milk, cream, brown sugar, spices, and salt to a boil over medium heat.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together yolks and sugar.
- Slowly add about half of the hot mixture into the eggs & sugar whisking constantly to avoid scrambling the eggs.
- Transfer mixture back to the pot and cook over medium heat for 2-4 minutes until the mixture thickens.
- Remove from the heat and strain. Whisk in pumpkin puree, vanilla, and bourbon.
- Once the custard has cooled to room temp refrigerate overnight.
- Add the custard to an ice cream machine and process according to manufacturer’s directions. It will take about 15-20 minutes. Store in a covered container in the freezer.
Caramel Beer Sauce
- 2 bottles (24 oz.) beer, I used a dark spiced ale – Sam Adams Octoberfest
- 1 & 1/2 cups light brown sugar
- 2T. unsalted butter
- pinch of salt
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1t. vanilla extract
- Bring beer to a boil over medium heat and reduce to 1 cup, takes about 15 minutes.
- Add light brown sugar, butter, and salt to the beer reduction and cook 6-8 minutes until mixture is thick and bubbling.
- Slowly add heavy cream. Be careful, the hot mixture will sputter. Stir to incorporate cream and add vanilla extract.
- Bring back to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer 6-8 minutes longer till sauce gets really thick.
- Sauce can be made up to a week ahead of time and stored in the fridge till ready to use.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Slice gingerbread and cut into cubes.
- Place on a parchment lined baking sheet.
- Bake at 350 for 20 minutes rotating once halfway through.
- Store croutons in an airtight container till ready to use.