Decisions, decisions. Some days it's just so hard to choose: Do I want ice cream? Or do I want mousse? Obviously the dessert goal here is something fluffy that requires minimal chewing, preferably involving chocolate. Ice cream gets extra points during a heat wave like this one, but it doesn't have that awesome light-as-air thing. Mousse is light as can be, but is it cold enough to take the edge off a sweltering August afternoon? Nah.
The answer is simple: Semifreddo! Okay, maybe it doesn't sound simple, but trust me, this dessert is a snap. Italian for "half-cold," semifreddo is a little bit like ice cream, a little bit like mousse, and a lot like what you want to eat right now. Especially this Peanut Butter Chocolate Semifreddofrom Martha Stewart.
2 cups whole milk
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 cups creamy peanut butter (not natural)
4 ounces semisweet chocolate chips (3/4 cup)
2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Line a 5-by-10-inch jumbo loaf pan with parchment paper, leaving a 4-inch overhang on all sides. In a medium saucepan, combine milk and 1 cup sugar. Bring to a simmer over medium-high, stirring constantly, until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat, add peanut butter, and whisk until smooth. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool to room temperature.
- In a small saucepan, bring 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 cup water to a boil over medium-high, stirring occasionally, until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat, add chocolate, and stir until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth. Transfer to a small bowl and let cool to room temperature.
- In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, whisk cream and vanilla until soft peaks form. Add half the peanut butter mixture and whisk until combined. With a rubber spatula, add half the remaining peanut butter mixture and gently fold 3 times (mixture will be rippled).
- Transfer half the cream mixture to loaf pan. Top with half the peanut butter mixture and 1/4 cup chocolate mixture. Top with remaining cream mixture, then drizzle with remaining peanut butter mixture and 1/4 cup chocolate mixture. With a skewer or thin-bladed knife, swirl mixtures together. Freeze until firm, about 5 hours (or up to 3 days). Let sit 20 minutes at room temperature before serving with extra chocolate sauce.