Fifteen Spatulas

Dark Cherry Semifreddo

Oh how cherries abound these days, it makes me such a happy girl.  I’m thankful that somehow I escaped the effects that awful childhood cherry medicine has on some people, and frankly, I can’t get enough of them.  Rainiers, Bings, and my most recent discovery, Strawberry Cherries, I will take them all!  So here is one of my recent cherry celebration dishes, creamy smooth dark cherry semifreddo.  It is absolutely heavenly, and if you want, you can add some dark chocolate chunks to point it down the Cherry Garcia direction.

Whisk egg yolks and sugar over a double boiler, until it gets frothy and thick:

Fold in whipped cream to lighten, along with the cherries:

Freeze for 4 hours until set.


Dark Cherry Semifreddo

Yield: 6-8 servings


12 oz fresh cherries, pitted and roughly chopped (or frozen dark sweet cherries)
8 extra large egg yolks
2 tbsp high quality cherry liqueur
1/3 cup sugar+3 tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract


Set up a double boiler (a heatproof bowl set over a pot with an inch of simmering water), and prepare an ice bath that the bowl can be set into later. Place the egg yolks, cherry liqueur, 1/3 cup sugar, and salt into the bowl. Cook for about 10 minutes, whisking frequently so the egg doesn’t scramble, until the mixture reaches 160 degrees F on an instant read thermometer and is a nice pale yellow color.

Take the egg mixture bowl off the pot and place it into the ice bath to cool.
In a medium bowl using a mixer, whip the heavy cream until frothy. Add in the 3 tbsp sugar and 1 tsp vanilla extract, and whip to soft peaks. Remove the egg custard from the ice bath, and add 1/3 of the whipped cream to it to lighten. Fold in the rest of the cream.

Put the pitted cherries down into the bottom of a glass loaf pan, and pour the custard on top. Cover the top directly with plastic wrap so a skin doesn't form, and freeze for at least 4 hours. When you're ready to serve, rub the outside of the pan with a hot towel, then invert onto a plate and slice. Enjoy!

Leave a comment:


  1. irene posted on July 26, 2011 at 10:10 am (#)

    Looks wonderful ! Thank you

  2. Ann posted on July 26, 2011 at 10:34 am (#)

    Oh, Delicious! I love semi-freddo…. this one is SO beautiful! Thanks!

  3. Platanos, Mangoes and Me! posted on July 26, 2011 at 10:49 am (#)

    Delicious and beautiful…piece of art!

  4. mjskit posted on July 26, 2011 at 11:02 am (#)

    This looks like a PERFECT summer dessert! Can’t beat the ingredients and love the fact that you don’t have to bake it. Thanks so much for the recipe!

  5. Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Desserts posted on July 26, 2011 at 11:08 am (#)

    Looks delicious! I want to try semi-freddo sometime. I have never had it. I just hear Giada in my head every time I read it saying it with an Italian accent :)

  6. Becka (The Elegant Eggplant) posted on July 26, 2011 at 11:12 am (#)

    This is TOTALLY beautiful :)

  7. Leah Taylor posted on July 26, 2011 at 11:39 am (#)

    This looks amazing!!!

  8. Colleen M. posted on July 26, 2011 at 11:58 am (#)

    This looks so delicious! I’m going to get extra cherries when I’m up in Traverse City this weekend so I can make this when I get home :)

  9. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide posted on July 29, 2011 at 1:46 pm (#)

    Such a great recipe and I’m really enjoying ones that don’t call for ice cream makers. I don’t have one. Those cherries look beautiful.

  10. Meg posted on July 29, 2011 at 2:35 pm (#)

    I’m ashamed to say I’ve never even heard of semifreddo, but I must correct that soon!

  11. Platanos, Mangoes and Me! posted on September 10, 2011 at 8:30 pm (#)

    You are making me crazy…Wow does this look good…