Eli Zabar’s Chocolate Caramel Matzo Ice Cream
Turn those leftover boxes of matzo into a knockout Passover dessert.
I’ve been making sourdough matzo for over thirty years and I’ve been making vanilla ice cream ever since 2003, when I opened Eli’s Market on New York City’s Upper East Side. Nothing brings me more joy than marrying two great ideas and finding other smart uses for simple products. My motto has always been “waste not, want not,” and I firmly believe that just about everything I make can become even more delicious in its “second” life. Case and point: this seasonal chocolate caramel matzo ice cream.
My best ideas tend to come about when I mistakenly make too much of one item and need to figure out what to do with it. Almost anything can be repurposed and turning my unsold jelly donuts into jelly donut bread pudding or using the heels of crusty baguettes to make crostini batons are just two examples of the end result being almost better than the original ingredient. As we started planning for this Passover season, I realized my matzo and vanilla ice cream were such an excellent pairing that I’m almost annoyed I didn’t think of it earlier. What about matzo ice cream sandwiches next year?
At the market, of course I use our own housemade sourdough matzo for this recipe. If you’re unable to come by the shop to pick some up for yourself—or if you just want to use up your own Passover leftovers—Streits, Yahuda, or Schmurah work really well, too.
For the vanilla ice cream:
- 6 large egg yolks
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 cup plus 3 Tbsp. sugar
- Pinch kosher salt
- 1 vanilla pod cut open and scraped
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
For the chocolate caramel matzo:
- 1½ cup light brown sugar
- ¾ cup heavy cream
- 16 Tbsp. unsalted butter
- ¼ cup sweetened condensed milk
- 2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 6 sheets plain matzo
- 6 oz. 60–70% chocolate, melted (1 cup)
- ½ cup toasted sliced or slivered almonds (optional)
- Coarse sea salt, for sprinkling