Friday, July 25, 2014

Peach~Almond Ice Box Cake

The icebox cake gained its popularity in 1920s and 30s when it was first introduced during WWI, using many commercial shortcuts and premade ingredients.  Similar in structure to a Charlotte or a Trife, the ingredients for the cake included wafer cookies, pudding or whipped cream and companies began printing recipes on the back of the boxes of these ingredients.

It certainly is the answer to creating a crowd-pleasing dessert without heating up the kitchen with the oven on during the summer months...especially here in the South where our temperatures have been in the 90s with humidity!

This recipe was features in my Fine Cooking magazine for August/September, along with a luscious Chocolate Mousse and Frozen Lime & Dulce-de-Leche Terrine with Blackberry Sauce.  I still had some peaches left over and this one definitely called to me to make.
These icebox cakes are easy and the best part is that they are made ahead for the best flavor and texture to develop, which turned out to be a good thing when I'm rushing around and getting ready for our next move.  Our home is just about done and we will start bringing boxes over this weekend, however, one little snag is that we're still waiting for the bamboo flooring to arrive so it can be installed.  We'll be living in the basement (which is finished with cork flooring) for about a week or so.  What do they say about "best laid plans of mice and men often go awry."

Peach~Almond Ice Box Cake
Peach Jam  
4 ripe medium peaches, peeled and pitted
1/4 cup peach liqueur, such as Mathilde (or water, which is what I used)
3 T granulated sugar
Coarsely chop the peaches and put them in a 2 to 3 quart saucepan.  Add the liqueur or water and the sugar.  Bring to a simmer over medium heat.  Cook, stirring occasionally and mashing the peaches with a potato masher, about 15 minutes.  They will become thick and jammy.  Transfer to a small bowl and cool completely.

4-5 peaches, peeled and pitted
4 oz. (1/2 cup) mascarpone
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar (icing sugar)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2  3.5oz boxes thin almond cookies such as Jules Destrooper

1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted

Thinly slice the peaches and set aside.  Beat the mascarpone with 1 cup of the heaving whipping cream in a medium bowl with an electric mixer using the whisk attachment (you can also use your stand mixer with the whisk attachment.  Beat on low speed until smooth.  Add the remaining 1 cup of heavy whipping cream and beat on medium speed until firm peaks, about 3 minutes.

Spread a thin layer (about 1/4 cup) of the whipped cream mixture on the bottom of a 2 quart baking dish.
Cover the cream with a single layer of the almond cookies.  Spread about half of the peach jam on top of the cookies, then arrange a half of the sliced peaches over the jam. Repeat the steps for a second layer, starting with the whipped cream, using half of what is left, then, the cookies, peach jam, and sliced peaches.

Sprinkle the top with the sliced, toasted almonds and cover with plastic wrap.  Refrigerate for at least 8 hours or up to 2 days. 

Cool and refreshing, this icebox cake was just the thing for a hot and humid summer day. Enjoy!

In case you were curious, the kittens are doing well, although Rosie is still not a happy camper.  I'm hoping that will change:-D

Curious, but still hissing a bit at these strange little beings!

 Now, since I will be busy packing, moving and unpacking over the next week and a half, I decided to announce July's apron winner...Mary Jane Sampson!  Please email me your mailing information so I can get this apron off to you.  

Understandably, I will be a little late getting the August apron up, buy boy am I anxious to create some new things in my kitchen!



  1. All the best with your move...pace yourselves! Hope that you have lots of help! These kinds of cakes are my very favorites. I consider them the ultimate in desserts! Thank you for the recipe!

  2. So excited about your move! Can't wait to see the new house and the new kitchen! Cute kitties!!! Big Hugs!!


  3. This recipe sounds delicious, can't wait to try it!
    Best of luck with your move. =)

  4. Hi Susan! Everything is lovely.....the peach icebox cake (how Southern!), the beautiful new home and the kittens! Rose will come around in time! So very happy for everything for you! The winner of your apron is going to be so delighted!

  5. I love this idea of an ice box cake! I recently stumbled on a banana pudding that's very similar and uses chess cookies. I bet yours is great for breakfast! :) Such a lovely home, Susan. Really, so beautiful. Love the front porch! We don't have a lot of front porches in CA, which is kind of sad. Enjoy the last move and those kittens! Lv, me

  6. Susan, that looks divine. Yummedy yum yum yum. Susan

  7. This peach ice box cake looks incredible, Susan.
    All the best with the move!

  8. Susan first your house looks beautiful. peach ice box cake sounds really yummy to me. what other fresh fruit do you think would work for this type of cake?
    stamping sue

  9. An ice box cake sounds perfect for summer! Hope your move goes well!

  10. Your home looks so lovely, I am Mary Sampson, thank you for the wonderful apron, I am wearing it all the time..The dessert looks so yummy and we are having a lot of heat it will be wonderful to make and serve. Thanks ever so much for the lovely lovely apron, I wear it all the time and think of sailing and the cool ocean breezes as we experience hot & humid weather..Your home looks absolutely delightful! May you have many years of joy, peace and love living there,the kitteh cats look so sweet the tiny ones and your older kitteh cat will adjust, looking precious, thanks ever so much, love love and love some more your blog and the apron! ciao mary Sampson from way out west!!!!!!!!!!!!XXXX()(XXXXX()()()XXX

  11. I've heard of ice box cookies but not ice box cakes. I'm actually old enough to remember ice boxes. There was a big ice house by the town lake where men would bring the ice chunks cut during the winter and pack them in saw dust. They would keep frozen all through the summer! Good luck with your move.

  12. Your house is beautiful! Love the kittens.

  13. Incredible as always Susan! Cuties they must be quite bigger now. Why isn't Rosie Happy?

    keep well

    Amanda x