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Mascarpone Semifreddo with Cherry-Port Sauce


This mascarpone semifreddo (a soft, half-frozen Italian dessert) looks like homemade ice cream but involves much less work.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4

Source: Martha Stewart Living, December 2010


For the Cherry-Port Sauce:

  • 1 cup ruby port
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup dried cherries (4 1/2 ounces)

For the Semifreddo:

  • 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon mascarpone cheese
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar
  • Coarse salt
  • 1 1/2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 8 store-bought chocolate wafer cookies


  1. Make the cherry-port sauce: Bring port and granulated sugar to a boil in a small saucepan. Boil until reduced by one third, about 5 minutes. Stir in cherries. Simmer for 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Let stand, covered, until plump, about 10 minutes. Refrigerate until thick, about 40 minutes.

  2. Meanwhile, make the semifreddo: Whisk mascarpone, cream, confectioners' sugar, and a pinch of salt until medium-stiff peaks form. Fold in chocolate. Spread mixture into a 5-by-9-inch loaf pan; cover with plastic wrap. Freeze until edges begin to harden and semifreddo is very cold, at least 50 minutes. Scoop into 4 serving dishes. Spoon cherry-port sauce over tops. Serve with chocolate wafer cookies.

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