Mint infused Blackberry Orange Semi-freddo

Semi freddo This lovely summer dessert is extremely easy to make and you can replace the blackberries with any other berries of your choice.

Try a strawberry version with rosemary and lemon instead of mint and orange!


For the base custard:

125g whole milk ( ½ cup)

375g  heavy cream (1 ½ cups)

4 egg yolks

1/3 cup sugar

3 Tbsp mint leaves, finely chopped

1 Orange, zest only

  1. Beat the egg yolks and sugar in a large mixing bowl until smooth and slightly pale.
  2. In a saucepan, heat the cream, milk, mint leaves and orange zest to a simmer.
  3. Put a damp cloth under the bowl of egg mixture and pour the hot liquid in a slow steady stream into the bowl, whisking constantly.
  4. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and with a spatula or wooden spoon, stir over a gently heat until the sauce start to thickens – Do not let it boil.
  5. Strain the thicken sauce into another bowl.
  6. Cool  on an ice bath, cover and place in the fridge for at least 4 hours.

For the meringue:

2  egg whites

80g sugar

  1. In a sauce pan bring the sugar and water to a boil.
  2. Whip egg whites on medium speed for 5 minutes, then turn down to low speed. Once sugar mixture reaches 113F, then turn the mixer to med high speed and pour the sugar down the side of the bowl, being careful not to pour it directly on the egg whites.
  3. Turn the mixer to high and whip until voluminous, white and shiny stiff peaks are formed and the bowl is no longer warm to the touch.

For the berries

2 cups fresh or frozen blackberries

1 cup sugar

  1. Heat 1 cup of blackberries with 1 cup of sugar and cook on low heat until the berries soften up and start to breakdown.
  2. Remove from the heat and mix in the remaining 1 cup of berries and chill the mixture until completely cold, up to 4 hours.

Final assembly:

  1. Chill the custard base in a container until edges start to freeze, then gently fold in the Italian meringue. Swirl in the blackberry purée and pour the whole mixture into a cold loaf pan that has been lined with parchment paper that extends beyond the edges of the pan.
  2. Place in the freezer until completely frozen, then remove from the loaf pan by lifting the edges of parchment, and slice. Serve immediately.

NOTE: You can serve the semi-freddo sliced on a plate and garnished with fresh blackberries or tucked between 2 sugar cookies.