For my latest dinner party, I was on the hunt for a showstopping, seasonally focused dessert that didn't require turning on the oven. The first thing that came to mind? A semifreddo. The dessert, which translates to "half-frozen" in Italian, can really refer to anything that's been somewhat chilled or frozen, but this version, from New York restaurateur Donatella Arpaia, is stunningly simple, with little more than strawberries, a pinch of sugar and liqueur, and cream. Serve in dramatic fashion — sliced uniformly with strawberries and sauce for garnish — and your guests will be duly impressed. Ready for the season's best no-cook dessert? Then get the recipe here.
Since Fall is a time when the weather is often warm in the day, but cooler at night, for my Autumnal lunch, I plan on serving a dessert that is both hot and cold in temperature. A semifreddo is an Italian dessert that is partially frozen.
While there are many variations, the one I'll offer guests is a luxurious mixture of almonds and heavy cream. What about the hot? — you wonder, that comes in the form of syrupy caramelized apples that are drizzled onto the semifreddo. The dessert is delicious without being overly rich or sweet making it the perfect conclusion to a late lunch. To get the recipe keep reading.
The phrase "half cold" in Italian, a semifreddo is any dessert including cake, ice cream, fruit, whipped cream, or custard that's partially chilled or somewhat frozen. The term also refers to a type of ice cream sandwich in which toasted croissants act as the cookie or bread base. In Italy, the most common ingredient in a semifreddo is gelato.