The ultimate pairing of ice cream, cookies and chocolate, this is good enough for a birthday party or summer potluck. But bring it out on a weekday, when no one is expecting it, and you'll be a legend in your own time.
20 cream-filled chocolate sandwich cookies
1/4 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup unsalted peanuts
1 quart vanilla ice cream, softened
1 cup icing sugar
3/4 cup evaporated milk
1/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup butter
1 tsp vanilla
Put the cookies in a large heavy-duty zip-top plastic bag, press out most of the air and zip the top closed. With a rolling pin (or a meat mallet) have your child crush the cookies into crumbs (highly recommended for releasing pent-up aggression that would otherwise be unleashed on a sibling). Dump cookie crumbs into a bowl.
Now place the peanuts into the bag and crush them until broken up. They don't have to be mashed, just cracked. Add the peanuts to the bowl with the cookie crumbs. Stir in melted butter, mixing until combined. Press the crumb mixture into the bottom of an 8 or 9 in. (20 or 23 cm) square baking dish. Place in the freezer until firm - at least 15 minutes.
Remove the dish from the freezer and spread the softened ice cream evenly over the frozen crumb layer. Return the dish to the freezer.
While the ice cream layer is freezing, make the topping. In a small saucepan, combine the icing sugar, evaporated milk, chocolate chips, butter and vanilla. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then continue to cook over medium-low heat for exactly 6 minutes, stirring constantly. At first the sauce will look somewhat uneven and thin, but it will thicken and become smooth and fudgey.
Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.
When the ice cream layer is frozen solid and the sauce is cooled, pour the fudge topping over the ice cream, spreading it to cover completely. Sprinkle with a few additional whole peanuts, and return to the freezer for at least 2 hours - or until set.