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Honey semifreddo

  • 10th Apr, 2006 at 6:41 PM

Here's a good summery pudding that I served at last night's dinner party. Yes, I know it isn't summer yet, but one can't always be patient.

Sadly, my freezer wasn't cold enough to do a good job, so this semifreddo really was just semi-cold. Plus, it melts quickly on the plate, so you have to serve it promptly. However, its velvety texture and gorgeous yellow seemed to win people over.

I got the recipe from Nigella Lawson and have only introduced a pinch of salt to hike up the flavour. You really don't have to mess with such a good thing! It's ridiculously fast and simple to make and lets you enjoy homemade ice cream without any of the churning.

Honey semifreddo
Originally uploaded by fanny_the_fairy.

Honey semifreddo


  • 1 large egg
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 125 mL honey
  • 300 mL whipping cream
  • 1 mL salt
  • 25 g pine nuts, toasted


  1. Get yourself a 900g loaf tin. You know, one of those big rectangular ones? Line it with clingfilm and leave plenty of extra on the side, so that you can drape it over top.
  2. Crack and separate your egg yolks. I find it easiest to do this with two bowls. Crack four eggs into the first bowl and using your hand, carefully scoop out the yolks. Let the egg whites drain through your fingers and deposit the yolk in the second bowl. When you've got four yolks in the second bowl, add the last large egg.
  3. Do yourself a favour and get the best honey that you can. You want something that smells of wildflowers and tastes of clover. It's really the only flavouring in this pudding. Measure it out and make sure it's liquid. If it's not, you can heat it gently in the microwave.
  4. Put a metal bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Pour your eggs and honey in to the bowl and whisk constantly. It should foam up before turning into a thick, pale-yellow foam.
  5. Whisk in a pinch of salt to the mixture and then take it off the heat.
  6. In a large bowl, whip your cream until it comes to stiff peaks. You want your cream to be very cold when you start, as this makes the process much easier.
  7. Fold the egg mixture into the whipping cream. You don't have to make this very even, swirls in the final product are beautiful.
  8. Now scrape it into your lined loaf pan. Thump it on the counter a couple of times to knock out any air bubbles. Then wrap it up with the overhanging film.
  9. Stick it in the freezer for a long while. Nigella's recipe claims two to three hours, but you'd be safest to do this overnight.
  10. When you're ready to serve, toast your pine nuts in a pan over low heat. Be careful, as they catch easily.
  11. Take the pan out of the freezer and unmold onto a plate. Scatter the pine nuts on top of the log and drizzle the whole thing with honey.

Serves 8.



( 21 comments — Leave a comment )
10th Apr, 2006 23:07 (UTC)
oh man. that sounds incredibly tasty.
10th Apr, 2006 23:09 (UTC)
It is! I assure you.
11th Apr, 2006 01:16 (UTC)
can you provide some sort of level of difficulty indication?
11th Apr, 2006 01:24 (UTC)
It's quite easy.

There's very little that can go wrong. Don't scramble your eggs and don't whip your cream into butter. Then, just wait for it to freeze properly and you're laughing!
10th Apr, 2006 23:15 (UTC)
Sound very good, but very sweet too!
10th Apr, 2006 23:22 (UTC)
It's not really. I myself don't like cloyingly sweet desserts, which is why there's a moderate amount of honey.
10th Apr, 2006 23:18 (UTC)
I don't cook- but this makes me want to, somehow.

definitely winning me over through it's textual description. pictures?
10th Apr, 2006 23:26 (UTC)
Cooking is such a wonderful alchemy. I recommend that you take it up sometime.

I didn't take a photograph of mine, for various reasons, but I hope that this one will suffice.
10th Apr, 2006 23:28 (UTC)

I need to find someone with cooking skills, fast.

That looks super delicious.
11th Apr, 2006 02:59 (UTC)
Good luck in your quest!
10th Apr, 2006 23:59 (UTC)
Ooh, that sounds nice mate. :)
11th Apr, 2006 01:05 (UTC)
It was sinfully good!
11th Apr, 2006 00:46 (UTC)
I bet that would be fantastic as a panna cotta too. Yummy.
11th Apr, 2006 01:05 (UTC)
Well, panna cotta's just supposed to be chilled, not frozen. Sprinking fresh berries on top sounds like a marvellous idea, though.
11th Apr, 2006 01:42 (UTC)
Right, but since it's thickened with gelatin, you could still flavor the lot with the honey without compromising the texture of the completed product I should think. I will definitely be trying the semifreddo though. =)
11th Apr, 2006 01:47 (UTC)
Yes, substitution the sugar for honey would probably work well. Although you'll want to cut the amount of cream you use, as honey is wetter than sugar.
11th Apr, 2006 04:27 (UTC)
Oh, this looks divine. Definitely going to try this before the end of term!

A question about shaping, though: if you're using a loaf pan it's going to come out fairly squared; if I wanted to create the lovely-looking shape in the picture, I'd have to use smaller molding tins, yes? (Namely, molding must be done pre-chilling, if at all?)
11th Apr, 2006 04:35 (UTC)
Yes. You need some sort of ramekin or cup for that kind of shape. But line it with clingfilm and you can't go wrong.

As well, since it is smaller, it will probably take less time to freeze.
11th Apr, 2006 12:00 (UTC)
i'm not sure which will finally prove the irresistable lure - the photography or the food - but the next time you're in the KW environs, or i actually make it to montreal, i'd love to actually meet you in person :)
11th Apr, 2006 14:44 (UTC)
And here I was thinking you like my charming personality! ;)

Of course we'll have to meet.
11th Jun, 2006 21:19 (UTC)
Try with Raspberries!
I had this in a restaurant where it was served with raspberries - the perfect touch. Seriously, the best dessert I ever had! (Without the pine nuts.)
( 21 comments — Leave a comment )