The second recipe is Praline Semifreddo adapted from Jamie Oliver’s earliest cookbook, The Naked Chef. Semifreddo (or half cold) class of semi frozen desserts are loved by folks all over the world and it’s certainly one of my all time favorites too. The best part about making Semifreddo is that you do not need an ice-cream maker to make this delicious treat. There is also no cooking involved, besides making the praline, which is not difficult at all. So, do try the recipe and I bet you will like it!
Recipe adapted from The Naked Chef by Jamie Oliver.
11 oz Peeled Hazelnuts
1 Cup Sugar
¼ Cup Water
1 Vanilla Bean
4 Large Eggs, separated
2 Cups plus 2 Tbsp Heavy Cream
Paraline: Roast the hazelnuts in the oven at 425˚F until golden (about 4 minutes). Put the sugar and water in a thick-bottomed pan and place on a medium-high heat. The mixture will start to bubble and then turn into a clear syrup. To begin with, it will gradually start to color in parts or from the sides.
Gently and carefully shake the pan, just moving it to mix the patches of color. When it’s golden brown, carefully tip it away from you and gently add the nuts. Turn the heat down to a simmer and gently stir to coat the nuts in caramel. When the caramel is dark golden brown, turn it out on to a clean, lightly oiled tray, or on to a double thickness of wax paper on a surface that won’t burn. It will cool to a flattish solid sheet.
When completely cooled (which takes about 20 minutes), smash it up roughly and pulse it in the food processor until the pieces are still quite chunky. Remove about half the praline, then pulse the rest to a powder, and add both lots of praline to the semifreddo mixture.
Semifreddo: Remove the seeds from the vanilla bean by scoring down the length and scraping the seeds out of each half. Whisk the vanilla seeds and sugar with the egg yolks in a large bowl until pale. In a second bowl whisk the cream until soft peaks form. (Important: Please don’t over whip it.) Then in a third bowl whisk or beat the egg whites with an electric mixer with a pinch of salt until they form very firm peaks.
At this point add the praline, the cream and egg whites, to the egg yolk mixture. Gently fold in. Immediately scoop the contents into your chosen container. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze until you’re ready to eat. To serve, take it out from the freezer, let it thaw slightly in the refrigerator to a “semifreddo” (semi-frozen).