Strawberry Ice Cream Cake

Happy birthday to me! This is my first time being pregnant on my birthday since I had Isabelle right before my birthday two years ago.
I've been grumpy from all the pregnancy symptoms - shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, not fitting into any clothes since 12 weeks. So I treated myself to some cute clothes, fancy sushi dinner, and of course an ice cream cake for my birthday (Disclaimer, I felt comfortable eating sushi while pregnant since our anatomy US looked good and we were eating at a high end sushi restaurant I trusted).
B offered to buy me an ice cream birthday cake from a store, but I always insist in making my own cakes if I have the time.  I made an ice cream cake almost 10 years ago, and made it again with different ice cream flavors. The chocolate cake is half batched and adapted from the same Allrecipes recipe since I liked the cake as a base.
As we are in the PNW, we are huge fans of Tillamook ice cream, and I used their Oregon strawberry. However, I would not recommend Tillamook for ice cream cakes as I found their ice cream to be on the soft side and it melted more quickly than I expected. A friend said they also noticed Tillamook ice cream melted when their friend also tried to make an ice cream cake, so I wasn't the only one struggling.
The ice cream cake was delicious, but the melting was troublesome. I was not able to get a chocolate drip topping as the ice cream melted and made a mess.  I had to refreeze the ice cream cake after I assembled the cake to get it firm enough to serve, which made the strawberries icy. And I was not able to a nice clean slice for photos. 
Fortunately, the cake was still a big hit with my family and friends. I'm happy with the final result, even if this ice cream cake did keep me busy on my birthday.

Strawberry Ice Cream Cake


Ingredients
CHOCOLATE CAKE
2/3 cup white sugar
3/4 cup all-purpose flour 
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup boiling water

ICE CREAM CAKE
1 gallon ice cream (I used Tillamook Oregon Strawberry)
3/4 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons sugar
1 pint strawberries, cut in half

Directions
CHOCOLATE CAKE: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a nine inch round pan.

In a large bowl, stir together the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla. Mix together. Stir in the boiling water. Batter will be thin. Pour into pan and bake 30 to 35 minutes in the preheated oven, until a toothpick inserted comes clean. Let the cake cool completely. Once cool, level off the dome of the cake so it's flat.

ICE CREAM CAKE ASSEMBLY: Let your ice cream soften just enough so it can be easily molded to the cake pan. 

Line a 9 inch cake pan with saran wrap so that you can lift the cake, or  use a 9 inch springform pan (I used a springform pan). Place your chocolate cake on the bottom of your pan. Add the ice cream to make the ice cream layer. Place ice cream in the freezer to harden the ice cream.

In a mixing bowl, beat the heavy cream and sugar until stiff peaks form. Keep it chilled in the fridge while ice cream cake hardens.

When ready to serve, remove the entire ice cream cake from the pan. Pipe the whipped cream on top and decorate with strawberries. Serve immediately and enjoy. Note: the entire cake can be frozen, but the strawberries will be harder to eat.

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