Rhubarb and Caramelized Almond Semifreddo


Semifreddo is an Italian dessert, and is best described as a lighter balance between ice cream and mousse. It is a great way to showcase Alaskan rhubarb.

Starting in July, skinny sticks of rhubarb start growing in their own plot alongside our Greenhouse. Silas, the owners’ son, likes to munch on the stalks raw, but for something a little sweeter, this semifreddo is a sure fire hit. 

This recipe originally comes from the website: www.acatinthekitchen.com

Note: MUST FREEZE FOR AT LEAST 8 HOURS. Can be made two days in advance. If using the caramelized almond in the recipe, make those first before starting the semifreddo.

Rhubarb Semifreddo

serves 8 

  • 2 cups rhubarb 
  • ½ cup sugar 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 2 cups whipped cream 
  • pinch of salt

 

1) Line a loaf pan with cling film, allowing for a generous overhang.

2) Cook the rhubarb over low heat in a non-reactive pot with half of the sugar until soft but not jam. Set aside to cool over a strainer to catch the juice.

3) Whip cream to soft peaks with the vanilla. Keep cold in the refrigerator.

4) Place egg yolks, rhubarb juice, salt, and remainder of the sugar in a stainless steel bowl. Set the bowl over a bain marie of simmering (not boiling!) water and whisk constantly until mixture is thick and reads 170F on a thermometer. 

5). Remove mixture and place in a Kitchenaid bowl with the whip attachment and whip until cool. 

6) With a whisk, fold cold whipped cream by hand into egg mixture and mix thoroughly but gently. Add the cooked rhubarb mixture and caramelized almonds, if using. 

7) Pour into the lined loaf pan, knock on counter to remove air bubbles, then cover with the top with the clingfilm and freeze for at least 8 hours, and up to 2 days. 

8) Before serving, pull from the freezer and allow to soften for 10 minutes before slicing. 

 Caramelized Almonds

  • ⅓ cup of whole almonds
  • ½ cup sugar

1) In a 300 degree oven, toast the almonds for 10-12 minutes. Let cool. 

2) In a non-reactive sauce pan over low heat, add the sugar and stir constantly with a wooden until it begins to caramelize. 

3) When all the sugar is melted and begins to become an amber brown, take off the heat. Quickly add the nuts, mix one to combine, and pour the mixture onto a coated sheet pan. Spread out as best you can as thin as you can onto sheet. 

4) When cool, break up with a knife or blitz a few times in Cuisinart into bite sized pieces.

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Another variation: Citrus Semifreddo

  • nonstick cooking spray
  • 4 ounces ginger snap cookies, crushed (about 20 small cookies) plus more for sprinkling
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ cup sugar, plus ¼ cup
  • 8 large egg yolks
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons limoncello (this is a lemon liqueur)
  • pinch salt
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1 lime, zested
  • 1 cup whipping cream

1) Line a loaf pan with cling film, allowing for a generous overhang.

2) Combine the crushed ginger snap cookies and the melted butter. Put in the lined pan and press down to firm and form a crust.

3) Whisk ½ cup of the sugar, the egg yolks, lemon juice, lime juice, limoncello, and salt in a large metal bowl to blend. Set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (do not allow the bottom of the bowl to touch the water). Whisk the egg mixture until it is thick and creamy, and a thermometer inserted into the mixture registers 160 degrees F, about 5 minutes. Set the bowl of custard into another bowl of ice water to cool completely. Stir in the zest.

4) Using an electric mixer, beat the cream and remaining ¼ cup sugar in another large bowl until firm peaks form. Using a large rubber spatula, gently fold the whipped cream into the custard. Spoon the mixture onto the prepared crust. Fold the overhanging plastic wrap over the custard and freeze until frozen, at least 8 hours or up to 3 days.

5) Before serving, pull from the freezer and allow to soften for 10 minutes before slicing. 

 

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