500g cherries, stoned
385g caster sugar
4 lavender fronds
4 eggs, size 7, separated into yolks and whites
60ml kirsch liqueur or port
½ teaspoon ground cardamom
100g white chocolate buttons
100g mascarpone, room temperature

Semifreddo is a super-simple Italian dessert. It is similar to ice cream, but much lighter. Be warned: once served, it can melt quickly, so I am encouraging you to eat your dessert speedily.

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1.Place the cherries and 300g of the caster sugar into a medium-sized pot over a medium heat.
2.As the cherries heat, they will begin to release their juice.
3.Bring to a gentle simmer then remove from the heat.
4.Swirl in the lavender fronds. Set aside to cool.
5.Put the egg yolks, kirsch, ground cardamom and the remaining caster sugar into a steel bowl and place over a pot of simmering water.
6.Whisk vigorously for approximately 2–3 minutes until doubled in size, pale and thick.
7.Fold through the chocolate buttons using as few stirs as possible.
8.Let the chocolate begin to melt, but don’t stress if it doesn’t melt completely.
9.Put the mascarpone into a clean bowl and fold through the egg yolks/sugar/ chocolate mixture along with 60ml of juices from the stewed cherries.
10.Beat the egg whites until nearly stiff peaks and fold through mascarpone mixture.
11.Place 10–12 cherries each into four 10cm x 4cm non-stick baking pans.
12.Reserve some cherries and juice for serving, refrigerating them until needed.
13.Fold the remaining cherries through the semifreddo mix.
14.Evenly divide the semifreddo between the moulds and place into the freezer overnight.
15.To serve, dip each mould into a bowl of hot water almost to their edge for 25–30 seconds, then invert into the centre of a plate.
16.They may need a touch of coaxing with a knife tip.
17.Cover with the remaining cherries and a tablespoon of the cherry cooking liquid.

Food styling, recipes & photography David Neville

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