Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

My semi-freddo is icy. any idea why?


Recommended Posts

I made some semi-freddos using Sherry Yard's recipe, I had to give her one more chance after my last attempt at one of her recipes went down in flames, and although the flavor and appearance are perfect the texture is icy. Even when they are left out at room to temp to soften they still stay icy until they are basically back to a liquid.

The recipe was basically anglaise mixed with pureed strawberries, meringue folded in, whipped cream folded in, into molds, into freezer. More of a mousse than a true semi-freddo I suppose.

Anyone have any ideas?



Link to comment
Share on other sites

My guess is the pureed strawberries. When I incorporate fruit into my ice creams, I always cook it with some sugar to a syrup, chill and add after straining the custard. No more icy frozen concoctions. I have not used any Sherry Yard recipes however, and the semi freddo I make has 250' sugar syrup beaten into yolks only, then flavorings, then whipped cream incorporated. I have not added meringue. Also when I make ice cream, I add some liquor (Maker's Mark is good!) and it changes the freezing temp with a creamier result.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't know if this will help or not but my instructor said that when making icecream the end result is better if you let the creme anglaise sit in the fridge overnight to let the proteins mature. He said that helps prevent ice crystals. It may work the same in your situation.

Don't wait for extraordinary opportunities. Seize common occasions and make them great. Orison Swett Marden

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wendy - I don't see a semi-freddo recipe in the Payard book. Are you maybe referring to his frozen souffle?

Yes, your right, I did confuse it with his frozen souffle..........sorry. So now I have to set out and figure out just what the differences are. I looked thru several recipes in books and recipes loose in my files and I was supprised to see how many ways one can make a semi-freddo. I definately had lost track of this info. in my brain.

So after nothing seems to be consistant, I've opened Professional Baking by Wayne Gisslen.......to see if I could find an answer or a definitive recipe. Below are some qoutes from his book that shead some light on this topic:

"Still-frozen desserts are closely related to products such as Bavarians, mousses, and hot souffles. These products are all given lightness and colume by adding whipped cream or an egg foam." or both.

"Still-frozen desserts include bombes, frozen souffles, and frozen mousses. In theory, each of these types is made with different mixes, but in actual practice today, many of theses mixes are interchangeable."

He then gives two bombe mixture recipes. One method is pour a hot sugar syrup into whipped yolks (pate a bomb) the other is heating the yolks and sugar over a water bath like a thick hollandaise. Both include folding in whipped cream and flavoring.

The next topic is Frozen Mousses and Frozen Souffles. He writes:

"Frozen mousses are light frozen desserts containing whipped cream. Although they are all similar in character because of their whipped cream content, the bases for them are made in several ways. Three types of preparations are included here:

Mousse with Italain meringue base

Mousse with syrup and fruit base

Mousse with custard base

The mixture for bombes and parfaits can also be used for mousses."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

O.k. so having that resolved in my brain, lets go back to the orginial question. Why was the semi-freddo icy?

I still have Gisslens book in front of me and I'll cheat and give you what he says.

"The base for ice cream, for example, is the same creme anglaise that you have used in many other preparations."

"Ice cream and sherbet are churn-frozen, meaning that they are mixed constantly while being frozen. If they were not churned, they would freeze into solid blocks of ice. The churning keeps the ice crystals small and incorporates air into the dessert."

"In the case of frozen desserts, proper measurement is important to ensure that the mix freezes properly. This is because the ratio of sugar weight to total weight has a strong effect on freezing. If an ice cream or sorbet mix contains too much sugar, it will not freeze enough to become firm. On the other hand, an ice cream with too little sugar will not be as smooth as one with the correct amount." We also know that alchol effect freezing too.

So let me grab Sherry Yards book and take a look at her recipe.

She mixes together strawberries, sugar, grand marnier and lemon juice, then purees it.

Then she makes an anglaise using milk not cream. It's 1 c. milk, 4 yolks, 1/2 c. sugar, pinch of salt. (This looks weird to me. Too much sugar and milk instead of heavy cream. AND she's making an anglaise which to me seems to say ice cream, not semi-freddo, frozen mousse or frozen souffle. But then that's open to interpetation.)

Her final "enrichment" folds in whipped whites and heavy cream/mascarpone cream. My guess is she makes up for the lack fo cream in the anglaise with the use of mascarpone in her whipped cream. But I can't tell you why, really. Just another way to do something.........is it better or just different..........or just more complicated then it needs to be?

Soooooo, all I can do is offer up a recipe I use that I know works well. It's incredibly simple in comparision to Yards recipe.....yet it's a strawberry souffle...........soooo here I go blurring the lines between frozen souffle, frozen mousse and frozen semi-freddo.

Strawberry Souffle (from The Roux Brothers on Patisserie)

puree together and strain:

1 3/4 c. pureed strawberries

1 3/4 c. sugar

juice of 1 lemon

whip and fold into sb puree:

3 c. heavy cream

whip together to soft peaks and fold into above mixture:

3 egg whites

1 T sugar

Freeze. He writes, "Be careful not to freeze this souffle for too long, or it will lose it's soft consistancy. If you want to freeze the souffle for longer, substitute a half quantity of Italian meringue for the egg whites in the recipe and reduce the amount of sugar accordingly."

soooooo, I hope this helps..........


Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Create New...