Jun 13, 2014

Raspberry semifreddo

Julia made raspberry cream, Giada made samifreddo, I made raspberry semifreddo...

Raspberry semifreddo 
adapted from Julia Child and Giada de Laurentiis
time: 20 min preparation + 8-12 hr inactive

4 oz (112 g) amaretti cookies
3 Tablespoons (45 g) butter, melted
4 egg yolks
1/2 cups (100 g) sugar

1 pinch fine salt
18 oz (500 g) frozen raspberries (about 1 cup puree)
1 cup (240 ml) whipping cream
2 Tablespoons (20 g) powder sugar
fresh mint leaves

According to my Dad, a retired veterinarian, to kill salmonella that, if present, would live on the outside of the egg, just put eggs for 10 seconds in hot/boiling water. And that's how I do it.

Line a standard 28cm/11cm loaf form with parchment paper. To line a form: I cut a piece of paper larger than the form, crush it between my hands, soak it under water, squeeze the water out, shake (gently) the paper to open and line the form.

Prepare crust: In a food processor with steel blades, crush cookies till almost fine. Add melted butter and blend till all greased. Line the bottom of the form with the cookie mix, without pressing. Put in the fridge. 

Prepare raspberry puree. Using a wooden spoon, force thawed and strained fruit (keep leftover juice for some other dessert) through a stainless steal wire sieve. Seeds should stay on the sieve. Keep the puree chilled.

Prepare two large/medium pots, one with almost simmering water (on the stove top) and one with ice water (off the stove top).

Using a bowl of a standing mixer with a whisk attachment, beat eggs yolks, salt, gradually adding sugar, on medium speed, till thick and pale yellow.  Place the bowl on top of the pot with not quite simmering water and, using a bubble whisk, continue beating till temperature reaches 160F/71C (about 5 minutes).  Now, transfer the bowl with yolk mix on top of ice water and keep whisking till eggs are completely chilled (about 5 minutes).

Fold cold raspberry puree into the eggs.

In a separate bowlbeat the whipping cream till stiff (rather than soft) peaks form. Using a chilled bowl and a a bubble whip instead of a mixer, improves you chances of a perfect whipped cream. Using a rubber spatula, fold in powder sugar. Then slowly incorporate the cream into the raspberry/egg mix. 

Pour the pink mix into the form, on top of amaretti crust. Fold the overhanging paper to cover the dessert. Let it sit in the fridge for at least 8 - 12 hours and up to 3 days.

When ready to serve, unfold the paper, flip the form upside down, release the dessert. Take the paper off, slice and enjoy.

  • all these beating, whipping, over hot water then over cold water, seems like a complicated and messy affair, but only at first;
  • Giada specified the temperature of the egg mix, which was better than Julia's "hot to touch";
  • I used my cooking thermometer and Hania's little hands that held it while I was doing the beating;
  • but like Giada said, it took 5 minutes for the eggs to reach 160F; if gets too warm, you get scrambled eggs;
  • when I make a semifreddo, I count on serving it next day; 8 hours might be enough but I give it 12, to be sure;
  • if you serve the whole semifreddo loaf on a platter, it's a good idea to put the platter in the freezer as well before using;
  • depending on the outside temperature, the dessert gets better after about 10 minutes of sitting outside the cold;
  • it's a true raspberry delight that brings out the best in the already delicious fruit;


  1. Love semifreddos, but never have made one with any kind of crust. Looks delicious, Ela!

  2. What a great tip for the eggs, thank you Ela :)

  3. That is pretty as a picture on that lovely plate!

  4. What a pretty semifreddo, so perfect for this hot summer!

  5. Woow you are killing me with those pictures ... How could you not lick the plate!!!! :). Loved every bit of this dish.

  6. I'm a huge fan of raspberries, too...and your semifreddo looks like the perfect way to cool off on a hot day. Gorgeous!

  7. A little dish of summer just came into my winter world!

  8. I have never made a semifreddo with crust...it must have been particularly delicious with amaretti cookies.

  9. Looks delicious! I have never made semifreddo before. It's going to have to go on my To Make list. Love raspberries but hardly ever do anything with then except eat them plain.

  10. This sounds delicious.... and amazing!

  11. Wow! This looks super yummy! love raspberries! Perfect for a lighter summer dessert! Great recipe Ela!

  12. I love raspberries and this look delicious!

  13. Raspberries and whip cream, ohh! this sounds delicious Ela!

  14. I love the texture of semifreddo!It looks divine!
    Kisses,sweet Ela!

  15. What a pretty semifreddo - I have never made one before and yours looks delicious! Perfect treat to cool down during the hot summer :)

  16. This looks amazing! especially with the crust ;) I'm surprised you didn't lick the plate clean! :P