Thursday, September 15, 2011

Vanilla Ice-Ice Baby! - Vanilla Bean Semifreddo

We all have cravings for Ice Cream at sometime or another. But let's face the facts, making your own can be a little time consuming. You have to deal with making a custard and chilling it. You have to make sure that your Freeze bowl is in the freezer ahead of time (if you have a Cuisinart, Kitchen Aid or Salton) or worse, you have to deal with Ice and Rock Salt. Oye!

Not that I am really knocking Ice Cream or Gelato in any way. It's just that one does not always have the time. But there is an easier path to frozen deliciousness my friends, oh yes. With a tiny bit of preparation first thing in the morning, while you are drinking your coffee; you can be feasting on frozen fodder after dinner.  All possible because of a frigid frappe that's not quite as well known in the USA as it is in Italy. I speak of the Semifreddo.

Though technically meaning Semi-Frozen/cold, most Semifreddo are indeed frozen treats, being based on either a Custard, Ice Cream or Gelato with copious quantities of whipped cream folded into it.  The idea is that the glacial treat will melt more readily in your mouth and "appear" light and refreshing on the palate.  Granted, this recipe is a bit of a cheaters Semifreddo, forgoing the Custard/Ice Cream/Gelato altogether and relying solely on the air capturing qualities of Whipping Cream.  OK, I guess I should mention that there is a slight amount of cornstarch, courtesy of the Confectioners' sugar, to help stabilize the whipped cream while it is freezing.

What you will end up with is very similar to a frozen mousse.  Quite delicious, and EXTREMELY fast.

Vanilla Bean Semifreddo

16 oz (2 cups) (475 ml) Light Whipping Cream
1/2 cup + 2 TB (10 TB)(2.75 oz)(78 g) Confectioners' Sugar
The caviar scraped from 1 Vanilla Bean (I like Mexican beans for this, but Tonga is nice too)

Butterscotch Sauce (if desired)

Before grabbing your cup of coffee, place a metal bowl in the freezer as well as the molds/container you wish to store your Semifreddo in. (this will make 32 oz of Semifreddo)

Consume your cup of coffee while leisurely perusing the business section of the morning paper or while you check your email. (5 - 10 minutes)  ;)

Remove the metal bowl from the freezer and add the Light Whipping Cream, Confectioners' Sugar and Vanilla Caviar then beat until soft peaks form.

Remove the molds (or storage container) from the freezer and spoon into either 8 4-oz molds or into the storage container, then cover as necessary (I was lucky cause these molds have lids)

Place on a baking sheet and move to the freezer for at least 8 hours. (After dinner)

When you have finished your evening meal, simply reach into the freezer and un-mold the Semifreddo onto a plate (this may require briefly dipping the mold in warm water to loosen the semifreddo)

Begin applying the Butterscotch Sauce. (or Raspberry Coulis or any other sauce of deliciousness you have handy... Heck, you can even eat it plain if you like.)

Garnish if desired (I used a hydrangea blossom, but it's not edible)

A tasty treat with 1/2 the fat.  Seriously.  16 oz of light whipping cream makes 32 oz Semifreddo, meaning about 1/2 of the desert is simply air.  So go ahead, have another scoop. :)


1 comment:

Patti T. said...

This sounds delicious and it is something I can do since I don't have any special equipment to make ice cream. Thanks Shane. Hope all is going well for you.