Sunday, 3 July 2011

Dessert Island Discs

Semifreddo di Albicocca e Cocco
Apricot and Coconut Semifreddo

This is another one of my little simple semifreddo's for a hot Summer afternoon. Apricots are in season, sweet, juicy and screaming to be used in any number of ways, so I decided to make a simple yogurt cream and keep it light and mild. I wanted to let the apricot be the star of the show... but a touch of coconut gives the creamy yogurt a tropical twist which brings a hint of the tropics into this Mediterranean melange...

 The yogurt cream is simply a low-fat yogurt, sweetened with powdered sugar. To make it more flavorful and delicious, I added a little vanilla extract and coconut flakes. In order to help it set to a creamier consistency, I added a little instant gelatine powder- the kind that requires no cooking. That's just about as easy as it gets!

The apricot cream is made of pureed apricot, powdered sugar, a little orange juice and also a little of the gelatine powder. Whisk this together smoothly and you are ready to fill your little glasses or ramekins.

Fill in alternating layers, being careful not to let the layers mix. I recommend starting and finishing with a yogurt layer, as the fruit may become a little crystalline if it actually freezes, whereas the yogurt will remain creamier. We don't actually want this to freeze though- I recommend an initial hour in the freezer and then a further hour or so in your regular fridge. This is a semifreddo and not a gelato - meaning a half-frozen dessert as opposed to a fully frozen one.

I served mine on a bed of chocolate shavings and with a crown of fresh, sliced apricot. I made the topping by cutting off the end of an apricot and carefully squeezing out the stone. I then cut the apricot into thin slices, which I laid together in a spiral- the slices slide and hold together really well all by themselves... just take your time and be careful and you will manage just fine- it is a lot easier than it may look!

And that is it! Done in maybe 10 minutes of prep-time with a couple of hours to set... leaving you with plenty of time to enjoy a lazy Summer afternoon! Let the sun shine in!

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