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Friday 17 June 2011

Sluttishly Sweet: Raspberry and Almond Semifreddo

I have always longed to own an ice cream maker, a longing which peeks every year when summer comes around and I get a hankering to make some ice cream. Unfortunately I have a pretty small kitchen and simply don't have enough room for any more kitchen equipment so no home made ice cream for me. Or so I thought until someone suggested I give the classic Italian dessert semifreddo a whirl. Now I know semifreddo is not the same thing as ice cream but it is delicious, sweet, creamy and requires absolutely no churning or fancy gadgets. As long as you have a whisk and a freezer compartment you are good to go.

I used Donna Hay's basic semifreddo recipe as a starting point as personally I prefer her method for whisking the egg mixture over heat. Although it might look quite complicated this recipe is actually pretty simple. I have complicated things by making candied almonds and raspberry sauce from scratch but if you prefer to save yourself a bit of time then just use store bought, no-one will know the difference. If you aren't particularly keen on almonds then ditch the candied almonds and leave out the amaretto, replacing it with some vanilla extract in the semifreddo mix. If you're not big raspberry fan then try replacing them with a different fruit. As always this recipe is more of a starting point from which I hope you will have lots of fun experimenting with. Be sure to let me know which wonderful flavour combinations you discover.

Raspberry and Almond Semifreddo
(adapted from Donna Hay's Basic Semifreddo recipe)

You will need:

For the semifreddo
3 whole eggs
2 egg yolks
200g caster sugar
2 tablespoons amaretto
500ml double cream

For the candied almonds
100g whole almonds
100g caster sugar

For the raspberry sauce
200g raspberries
2 to 3 tablespoons caster sugar (to taste)
1 tablespoon amaretto (optional)

Make it!

1. To make your candied almonds place the sugar in pan and heat gently until it melts. There is no need for a sugar thermometer really it should be a nice light caramel colour. Stir in the almonds ensuring they are completely coated and then tip out onto some greaseproof paper to cool. You can try and separate them out a bit but don't worry too much as once they are cooled you will need to roughly chop them anyway.

2. To make your raspberry sauce place the raspberries, sugar and amaretto in a pan and cook over a low heat, stirring occasionally, until the raspberries are broken down. If you want to remove the seeds, pass through a sieve and then leave to cool.

3. Now on to the semifreddo! Put your eggs, egg yolks, caster sugar and amaretto into a heatproof bowl that can sit nice and cosy over a pan of simmering water without the bowl touching the water. Grab your hand whisk and beat the egg mixture for about five minutes until it is pale, thick and about doubled in size. Remove the bowl from the pan and leave to cool.

4. In a large bowl whip your double cream until it forms stiff peaks then gently fold in the cooled egg mixture until it is all nicely combined. Add in your roughly chopped candied almonds and swirl your raspberry sauce through the mixture.

5. Pour your mixture into a 2 litre metal tin, which you can line with cling film to make the semifreddo easier to remove, or use a silicone loaf cake mould like I did. Pop the whole thing in the freezer overnight.

6. To serve, remove the semifreddo from its container and cut into nice generous slices. Bueno appetito!

Handy hint: once you have put your almonds onto the greaseproof paper get that pan straight into soak in some hot water and any caramel residue should come right off.


  1. It has amaretto in it! How can it NOT be amazing. *plots dinner party to try it*

  2. I love the you plot dinner parties to try recipes like this, Kat. I just plot eating too much on a Monday night.

  3. Hi! Your semifreddo recipe was nominated as one of the "Best 300 Semifreddo Recipes on the Net". To vote for it, please visit - your recipe is positioned at #264 (random order).


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