Rhubarb and Pistachio Semifreddo


Serves 8

Recipe: Tamara Gillon

I love making ice cream throughout the year, using seasonal fruit. This semifreddo (or parfait) is an easy alternative as you don’t need to make an anglaise (custard), and it doesn’t require churning. It’s the ideal dessert for a party as it looks spectacular, but can be made ahead of time, then sliced and plated at the table. A light and refreshing end to a meal.


380g red or pink rhubarb

140 g caster sugar - divided

3 tbsp water

4 eggs

5 tablespoons pistachio nuts, roughly chopped

300ml whipping cream

1 tsp vanilla extract

50g ready-made meringues, broken into 4cm pieces.

Frozen raspberries (to serve)

Rhubarb and Pistachio Semifreddo


Line a 500g loaf tin with clingfilm (overhang) and place in the freezer. (The dimensions of the loaf tin used approx 14x24x7 cm )

Top and tail the rhubarb and cut into 3cm lengths. Put the rhubarb, 100g of the sugar and the water into a medium-sized stainless steel saucepan. Heat gently until the sugar has dissolved, and then cook on a low heat until the rhubarb is soft – about 10-15 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. Using a stick blender, blitz briefly to a coarse puree. (The puree can be made a couple of days ahead, and stored in the fridge).

Separate the egg yolks and whites into two large bowls. Add 40g of the sugar and the vanilla extract to the yolks, and mix together with a hand-held whisk until thick and a trail is left when you lift the beaters. Gently mix in 4 tablespoons of the pistachios (reserve the remaining tablespoon for decorating).

Beat the egg whites until they form stiff peaks. In the third bowl, beat the cream until it holds its shape and forms soft peaks.

Gently fold the cream into the egg yolk mixture and then fold in the egg whites with a metal spoon in a figure-of-eight motion.

Gently spoon a third of the cream mixture into the prepared tin and freeze for 20-30 mins or until just set (keeping the rest of the cream mixture in the fridge). Once it has set, take the tin out of the freezer and pour in half of the cooked rhubarb, and sprinkle over ½ the meringues. Top with another third of the cream mixture and return to the freezer for another 30 mins. Once this layer has set, add the remaining rhubarb, followed by a final layer of cream. Level the top, and pull over the overhanging clingfilm. Cover with another layer of clingfilm

Freeze for at least 6 hours (or overnight).

When ready to serve, turn out onto a platter and remove the film carefully (you may need to give it a minute or 2 to thaw, or the film may tear).

Decorate with frozen raspberries and the remaining pistachios

Variations: This rhubarb version is perfect for winter and spring when shocking pink forced stems or tender early-season varieties are available. Paired with vanilla, it’s a take on the classic rhubarb and custard. Experiment with different fruit throughout the seasons – cherries or raspberries in summer, for example. Or try gooseberries (pink if you can find them), adding a touch of elderflower cordial to the compote. In the autumn, I make a version using plums – swap out the pistachios for toasted flaked almonds and use crushed amaretti in place of the meringue and amaretto liqueur instead of vanilla essence.


[object Object]


If you're Haitian and/or familiar with Haitian culture, this is one of the most memorable and cherished dishes. This soup is prepared for New Year’s Day.

Read more

[object Object]


I prefer making the pate brisée dough the day before and storing it in the fridge. You can also use ready-made pie dough or puff pastry, but you will not regret making your own. It's fun, and you will have earnt bragging rights.

Read more

[object Object]


The mushrooms (Djon Djon) need to be soaked, and the soaking liquid is what makes this dish unique, offering an earthy taste and signature black color. You can make this dish with or without shrimp.

Read more

[object Object]


I like to add a hint of good olive oil and serve with either toasted, sliced baguette, country bread, or for a healthier option, vegetables such as baby carrots, cucumber sticks, or endive leaves (my favorite).

Read more

[object Object]


Use other herbs if wild garlic isn't available - basil or tarragon go well.

Read more

[object Object]


This is a brilliant dressing to have up your sleeve, easy to make and extremely versatile. It’s great with steamed green vegetables – broccoli or green beans for example, or spooned alongside some grilled chicken. It keeps well for a couple of days in a sealed container in the fridge.

Read more