Peaches-and-Cream Ice Cream Cake


Even if all you're celebrating is the splendor of a summer day, this festive dessert is a colorful cake that's more about assembly than about baking.


  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened, plus more for pan

  • 1 ½ cups cake flour (not self-rising)

  • ½ teaspoon baking soda

  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 2 large eggs, separated

  • ½ cup buttermilk

  • Vegetable-oil cooking spray

  • 1 ½ pints vanilla ice cream, slightly softened

  • 1 ½ pounds ripe peaches, cut into ½-inch pieces (about 2 ¼ cups)

  • 2 pints peach sorbet, slightly softened


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter an 8-by-12-inch cake pan, and line with parchment paper. Butter parchment; set aside. Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl; set aside.

  2. Put butter and 3/4 cup sugar into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; mix on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Mix in egg yolks. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture in 3 batches, alternating with the buttermilk. Transfer batter to a medium bowl; set aside.

  3. Put egg whites into the clean bowl of mixer fitted with the whisk attachment; beat on medium-high speed until foamy. Gradually add remaining 1/4 cup sugar, beating until soft peaks form. Gently fold half of egg-white mixture into batter with a rubber spatula. Fold in remaining egg-white mixture. Transfer to prepared pan.

  4. Bake until light golden and a cake tester inserted into center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool a wire rack 15 minutes. Invert onto rack; remove parchment. Let cool completely. Trim cake to 10 by 5 inches. Cake can be refrigerated, wrapped in plastic, up to 1 day.

  5. Coat a 10-by-5-inch loaf pan with cooking cooking spray; line with parchment, allowing a 1-inch overhang on long sides. Coat parchment with cooking spray. Line with plastic wrap, allowing a 3-inch overhang.

  6. Stir ice cream and peaches in a medium bowl; spread into prepared pan. Freeze until firm, about 2 hours. Spread 1 pint sorbet over ice cream; freeze until firm, about 1 hour. Spread with remaining pint sorbet; top with cake. Cover with plastic overhang. Freeze until firm, at least 2 hours or up to 4 days. To loosen cake from pan, wrap a damp, hot towel around pan. Lift out. Serve immediately.

Cook's Notes

For layers with a colorful contrast, use two different varieties of peach sorbet.

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