Semifreddo served 3 ways: as a ‘Christmas pudding’, in glasses and in one communal serving dish
The countdown to Christmas has truly begun and I’ve gone a little batty with party planning and menu strategising. Think of me as your friendly (but slightly psychotic) Kris Kringle version of a bridezilla. Most of my running around has all to do with food of course with dinners, lunches, desserts, desserts and more desserts! So expect to see a myriad of Christmas recipes and festive ideas in the lead up to December 25th on this humble blog. I’ve literally gone nuts cooking Chrissy things more than a month ahead!
Let’s kick things off with this Strawberries ‘n’ Cream Semifreddo, which ticks all the right boxes for an Aussie Christmas – easy to make, can be prepared ahead with no fuss, refreshing for the scorching weather and epitomises summer in every spoonful. Serve it as popsicles, in ramekins, gorgeous glassware or in one large size to be sliced up or attacked with spoons. Or for something different, put it in a pudding mould and finish it off with a light coating of white chocolate ganache and top it with sparkly cachous for a Christmassy touch. Make it ripply, swirly or go the full hot pink and mix all the strawberries in the semifreddo mix.
The flavour possibilities are endless with all the luscious summer fruits about to hit our shores and it’s a perfect recipe for those who don’t own an ice cream maker. Bear in mind that this tends to melt a little faster than standard ice creams, which was a challenge for photography let me tell you! And is it any good? Well if you love strawberries as much as I do, then it’s simply divine. The Captain is actually enjoying his second bowl right now and it’s 1am in the morning! And he usually avoids ice creams at all costs.
Strawberries and Cream Semifreddo
2 punnets of strawberries (500g) – washed and hulled
2 egg yolks
1 C (220g) caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract / 1 vanlla bean (halved and scraped)
1 3/4 C pouring cream
Process the strawberries until pureed and set it aside.
In a heatproof bowl over low simmering water (make sure the bottom of the bowl isn’t touching the water), whisk the eggs, egg yolks, sugar and vanilla with a hand beater for 5 minutes until it’s pale and thickened.
Remove from heat and continue beating until it has cooled.
Whisk the cream until soft peaks and gently fold through the egg mixture.
Set aside 2 cups (500ml) of the cream mixture and combine with the pureed strawberries.
Pour cream mixture into a 2L serving dish (or a loaf tin lined with plastic wrap). Dollop the strawberry cream and grab a skewer and make with the swirlage.
Alternatively you could pour it into round bowls or molds (that’s lined with plastic wrap), ramekins or glasses.
Freeze for 6 hours or overnight uncovered until firm. After it has frozen, cover it with plastic wrap until ready to use.
For a white chocolate ganache topping, measure out equal weights of both white chocolate and cream. Break up the chocolate in bowl. Heat the cream in a pot until it has boiled and pour over the chocolate. After about a minute, mix until chocolate has melted and it has combined. Spoon over the semifreddo and top with cachous or extra berries.
Adapted from Donna Hay