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Recipe for :

Mocha Semifreddo

Deborah Mele in FlorenceThis recipe comes from the web site of Deborah Mele, Italian Food Forever.

"My love affair with Italian cooking began almost 30 years ago when I married into a large Italian family, overflowing with talented cooks. Throughout the early years of my marriage, I had the opportunity to learn the basics of Italian cuisine, and to perfect traditional family recipes."

This is a must visit web site - if you would like to learn more then <click here>

"This is a light, creamy, frozen dessert that is great for entertaining as it has to be prepared ahead of time. Simply remove it from the freezer just before serving, garnish and serve!"


4 large eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa
1 cup chocolate wafer crumbs
1 tablespoon instant espresso powder dissolved in 1 teaspoon warm water

To finish:
Chocolate sauce, warmed (homemade or purchased)
Chocolate covered espresso beans
1/2 cup heavy cream whipped with 1/8 cup powdered sugar
Cocoa for dusting

  • For the semifreddo, begin by lining a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan with plastic wrap, leaving a 2 inch overhang all around. Put the pan in the freezer to cool.
  • Combine the water and sugar in a small pan over medium heat until the sugar is completely dissolved.
  • While the sugar syrup is heating, beat the eggs in a bowl on medium high speed for about 3 - 4 minutes or until they are thick and pale.
  • Continue to beat, and slowly add the hot syrup in a small stream. Continue beating until the mixture has doubled in volume and is cool.
  • Stir in the cinnamon, and sift the cocoa over the bowl, mixing it in evenly.
  • Whip the cream with the 1/4 cup of powdered sugar until it is almost stiff. Fold this mixture into the beaten eggs and mix well.
  • Pour half of this mixture into the prepared pan, and sprinkle the chocolate cookie crumbs on top being careful not to mix.
  • Return to the freezer for about one hour.
  • While the first layer is firming up in the freezer, begin preparaing the espresso layer by stirring the dissolved espresso into the remaining mixture.
  • Cover and chill in the refrigerator for the remainder of the hour.
  • Once the hour is up, gently stir the espresso mixture if it has separated, and carefully pour this mixture on top of the lighter mixture already in the pan. Do not mix!
  • Carefully cover the pan with plastic wrap, and return to the freezer for at least 8 hours, or overnight.

To serve:

  • Unmold the semifreddo, and cut into 1 1/2 inch slices.
  • Drizzle a little of the chocolate sauce on each plate, and place the semifreddo slice on top.
  • Put a dollop of whipped cream in the center of the slice, and decorate with a few chocolate espresso beans.
  • Lightly sift a little cocoa around the plate if desired. Serve immediately.

Serves 8

Deborah Mele
Italian Food Forever

Chi Mangia Bene, Mangia Italiano
(Those Who Eat Well, Eat Italian)

© Deborah Mele, Italian Food Forever