What is Semifreddo?

This is what I am asked whenever I serve this delectable Italian treat.  Simply put, semifreddo is a semi-frozen, or “half cold” dessert.  The particular semifreddo I whipped up recently was made even better with the addition of Tim Tams.

Now, what are Tim Tams?

Tim Tams are delicious Australian biscuits– basically a crisp chocolate sandwich cookie, made even more irresistible by being dipped in chocolate.  Pepperidge Farm makes them and can often be found at Target, and other varieties can be found at Cost Plus as well.  If you do get your hands on some, dare yourself to do a “Tim Tam Slam” with tea, coffee, or milk.  The process is best explained here.  Sounds amazing, right?

Back to the Tim Tam Semifreddo– this amazing combination was inspired by a post I found on the ever-so-helpful Baking Bites.  I’ve yet to try the actual semifreddo recipe found there, as I already had another tried-and-true recipe (see below.)  But the idea of adding Tim Tams?  Genius!





Tim Tam Semifreddo
(Adapted from Giada at Home and Baking Bites)
8 egg yolks, at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar, plus 1/4 cup
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp fine sea salt
1 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 cups Tim Tams, coarsely chopped

Spray a 9x5x3-inch nonstick loaf pan with vegetable oil cooking spray.  Using 2 pieces of parchment paper, line the pan, allowing the excess to hang over the ends and sides.

In a medium stainless steel or glass bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, 1/2 cup sugar, vanilla extract, and salt until smooth.  Put the bowl over a pan of simmering water, making sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water.  Whisk until the egg mixture is pale, thick, and creamy, and an instant-read thermometer registers 160 degrees, about 10-15 minutes.  Place the bowl into a larger bowl of iced water to cool completely.

In another medium bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the cream until thick.  Add the remaining 1/4 cup sugar and beat until the cream forms stiff peaks.  Mix 1/4 of the cream into the cooled custard.  Using a spatula, gently fold the remaining cream into the custard.  Fold in the Tim Tams.

Spoon the mixture into the prepared pan.  Fold the overhanging parchment paper over the custard and freeze for at least 8 hours or up to 3 days.

Run a thin-bladed spatula around the semifreddo between the parchment paper and the pan.  Unfold the parchment paper and invert the semifreddo onto a platter.  Peel off the paper and cut into 1-inch slices.  Serve on chilled plates and enjoy!


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