Pistachio and White Chocolate Semifreddo

Serves: 8-10

Pistachio and White Chocolate Semifreddo
Pistachio and White Chocolate Semifreddo Pistachio and White Chocolate Semifreddo

I’m a great fan of semifreddo: if you’ve got an electric whisk and some mixing bowls you can whip up a tip top pudding in no time at all. What’s more a semifreddo can be served straight from the freezer as the texture is more of a frozen mousse than a classic custard-based ice cream. I buy pistachio paste online –it doesn’t have a particularly strong flavour but it does give the semifreddo an exquisite eau de nil colour. For a more elaborate pudding I serve the semifreddo withrosewater-scented poached rhubarb or a few raspberries when they come into season.


  • 75g shelled pistachios
  • 100g white chocolate, finely chopped
  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 75g icing sugar
  • 90g pistachio paste (see intro)
  • 400ml double cream
  • 4 tablespoons caster sugar
Pistachio and White Chocolate Semifreddo


  1. Dampen the inside of a 1 litre high-sided loaf tin with a little water and line with cling film (the water helps the cling to stick to the tin).  Heat the oven to fan 160°c, mark 4. Lay the pistachios on a baking tray and roast in the oven for 6-8 minutes until lightly coloured and nutty smelling. Leave to cool then grind to a fine powder. Sprinkle a third of the ground nuts over the base of the loaf tin. Set aside the rest.
  2. Put the white chocolate in a heatproof bowl and melt in a microwave in short bursts, stirring every 30 seconds. Set aside to cool a little. If you haven’t got a microwave put the chocolate in a heatproof bowl resting on a saucepan filled with 3-4cm depth of gently simmering water and stir until liquid smooth.
  3. Put the egg yolks in a large bowl, the egg whites in a slightly smaller bowl and the double cream in a similar sized bowl. Add the icing sugar to the egg yolks and whisk with an electric beater for 3-4 minutes until thick and frothy. Beat in the pistachio paste. Without cleaning the whisks, beat the cream to floppy peaks-just until it is starting to hold its shape. It’s better to underwhip than overwhip. Fold the cream into the egg and pistachio mixture followed by the remaining ground pistachios.
  4. Clean the whisks really well- the egg whites will not stiffen if there is any fat on the whisks. Beat the egg whites to stiff peaks then beat in the caster sugar a tablespoon at a time. Fold into the pistachio mixture. Spoon into the loaf tin, cover with cling film and freezer overnight.
  5. To serve, unmould the loaf onto a serving plate and cut slices of the semifreddo. Serve with poached rhubarb or raspberries.
Pistachio and White Chocolate Semifreddo