Fig Ripple Semifreddo
I’m a bit hooked on home made ice cream now that I have a plentiful supply of eggs. It always felt a bit extravagant when I had to buy the eggs, so I only made it once a year for Christmas. But now I make it whenever the eggs in the fridge reach two dozen and I have no-one to give the surplus supplies to. This recipe came about as I had a surplus of eggs and a surplus of fig jam that I made recently when I stumbled across some gorgeous new season figs at the Hawkesbury Harvest Farmers Markets, in Castle Hill. Jennifer at Le Delicieux provided me with the inspiration, with her fig paste recipe.
I was a bit apprehensive as I’ve never made jam before but it really was very easy. My only comment is, it was very sweet and I tried eating it with cheese, but it just wasn’t savoury enough for me. I have strict rules about mixing sweet and savoury, I usually love store bought fig paste with cheese, but I didn’t quite manage to achieve it with this recipe. However, if I called it jam (that conforms to my rules) and put it in a sweet recipe it is delicious.
The second phase of the inspiration for this recipe was from another trip to the Hawkesbury Harvest farmers market. This time I was lucky enough to chat to Kim and Ian Massingham about their buffalo farm and cheese making. Once we’d finished talking all things cheese the conversation changed to ice cream and I had the chance to try some of the rich and creamy buffalo milk ice cream that Kim makes, including a fig ice cream made with one of the other producers fig jam. Bingo! A use for 500 plus grammes of fig paste that needs eating in my fridge.
Here is my recipe for fig jam semifreddo. If you don’t want to make the fig jam I’m sure you could substitute it with a store bought jam, or even better, some homemade jam from the Hawkesbury Harvest farmers market. Once made I put half of the mixture into a loaf tin lied with cling film so that I could serve it easily in a slice. The rest went into my usual ice cream tub to be served with berries and meringue, a recipe I found in the Cumulus cook book.
Fig Ripple Semifreddo (adapted from Gourmet Traveller)
9 egg yolks
250g caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
1 tablespoon water
600ml pure cream
200g creme fraiche
200g Fig Jam or Fig Paste
Put egg yolks, caster sugar, vanilla bean paste and the water in a heat proof bowl and whisk until pale and fluffy and tripled in volume. This should take about five minutes. Once it has reached the right consistency, either transfer to a clean bowl and whisk until cool. This will take about 2 minutes. Personally, I don’t have enough bowls and don’t like washing up enough to dirty another bowl so I place the hot bowl into the sink partially filled with cold water and continue to whisk until cool.
Meanwhile, in another bowl or stand mixer, whisk the cream and creme fraiche together until soft peaks form. Fold the cream into the cooled egg mixture, then mix through the fig jam. The fig jam was very sticky and wanted to stick together in a big sticky ball so in order to try and distribute the flavour evenly I put the jam into a piping bag and piped a spiral of jam then stirred. I didn’t get the desired ripple affect but the jam is evenly distributed and you get the surprise nuggets of flavour that you would with a commercially made ripple ice cream.
Place the mixture into a tub for freezing or line a loaf tin with cling film and place the mixture in the loaf time for freezing. This means you can remove easily and slice for serving if you prefer that to a scoop.