Masala Chai Semifreddo served with Crushed Pistachios and Fresh Figs

Surprised seeing another dessert so soon? Honestly, I am too…..

This masala chai semifreddo is the result of inspiration striking from several different quarters!

First, there has been a lot of ‘semifreddo’ talk on Masterchef this season, and then there was this amazing masala chai ice cream by ‘A Brown Table’. But what really made me take this plunge finally was an event that I attended a couple of weeks ago – Melbourne’s first ever ‘Chai Festival’ hosted by T2 at their headquarters in Richmond.

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I am more of a coffee gal but I still wanted to attend this chai festival; to broaden my knowledge about this beverage and also play a little at the ‘make your own tea blend’ station which was the highlight of the festival. We came home with lots of special tea blends; my son went totally bonkers and I now have all sorts of crazy blends at home…..a Chinese tea blend with plenty of dried rosebuds (the aroma of this one is heavenly) and a spicy Indian chai spiced further by my son with loads of pink peppercorns.

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I tasted crème brulee tea for the first time ever (and here is a badly shaken picture of it!!)

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And how I envied this copper teapot….

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The idea of this Masala chai semifreddo just got stuck in my head and I really wanted to give it a shot. Had a small chat with the gorgeous girls at T2 who after hearing my idea, guided me towards their organic spiced chai blend. One of the girls got me a sample of the tea so that I could experience the taste and aroma before making up my mind. Little did she know that anything with spice gets me hooked!

So I did a fair bit of research on semifreddos and eventually today’s dish happened…..

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Traditionally, a semifreddo is made using eggs but I decided to try out this eggless version. The last time I made this no-churn icecream, there were so many readers who wrote to me asking for an eggless recipe. So this time, considering all those requests, here is my recipe for Masala chai semifreddo served with crushed pistachios and fresh figs.

If you have never made a semifreddo, seriously you need to give it a go. It is creamy, delicious, sweet, cold (yes, of course)…everything that you want from an ice cream but at a quarter of the time or effort. And what’s more, you can go completely bonkers with flavours…..get as creative, experimentative or wild as you like.

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For those who aren’t too familiar with the semifreddo term, it basically is the Italian name for a semi-frozen dessert which can be like an icecream/frozen custard/icecream cake……anything which has a frozen mousse texture comes under this class. Which means that there is plenty of room to play around in terms of flavours…….

Again, there is no particular shape to a semifreddo, though you are most likely to see it in a rectangular tin to scoop out like an ice cream. If you want individual portions, you can set it individual glasses or moulds. I wanted an ice cream cake sort of feel, so went for a circular shape.

So, here’s my humble dedication to India’s much loved beverage….a creamy, tea-licious masala chai semifreddo!

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Ingredients:

Note – This is not a sponsored post of any manner and my use of T2 chai is entirely my own decision. So please feel free to use your own masala chai blend; just make sure you adjust the strength of the flavour accordingly as the T2 organic spiced chai blend is really strong and full on.

(Serves 4-6)

1. 400 ml full cream milk
2. 400 ml condensed milk
3. A pinch of salt
4. 3 tbsp T2 organic spiced chai blend
5. 200 ml water
6. 250ml heavy cream
7. Crushed pistachios; to garnish
8. Fresh figs (optional); to garnish

Method:

1. Add the chai blend to water and bring to boil (adding the chai blend to cold water and slowly bringing the water to boil helps to deepen the flavours). Reduce heat and simmer for 3-4 minutes.
2. Strain and return the liquid to heat; simmer for another 4-5 minutes to slightly thicken the infusion. Remove and allow to cool.
3. Place the milk, condensed milk and salt in a pan and bring to boil; stirring continuously. Reduce heat and add the tea infusion. I added one tbsp at a time, tasting after each till I was happy with the flavour. Since the strength of your tea infusion might vary, taste and add enough to get that warm chai flavour but not too strong to overpower the dessert. I added approximately 7-8 tsp of the infusion.
4. Continue to cook for another 10-12 minutes till it reaches the consistency of a thin custard. Allow to cool and then chill in the fridge.
5. Whip the cream into soft peaks and then fold into the chilled milk mixture.
6. Line the tin with baking paper and pour the mixture into the tin. Freeze for at least 4 hours or till set.
7. Garnish with crushed pistachios and serve with fresh figs on the side.

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22 thoughts on “Masala Chai Semifreddo served with Crushed Pistachios and Fresh Figs

  1. Sweta September 23, 2016 at 2:07 pm Reply

    Lovely Pics and unusual recipe for dessert. ! have featured this on a fusion mithai blog roundup..http://artsycraftsymom.com/best-indian-dessert-modern/

    Liked by 1 person

    • vanyadhanya September 23, 2016 at 2:22 pm Reply

      Thanks Sweta; that’s so nice of you. Will definitely take a look at all the others.

      Like

  2. Mayuri Patel October 8, 2015 at 4:58 pm Reply

    lovely photos. Got to learn about different types of tea blends that I don’t get to see in my part of the world. Dessert looks so refreshing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • vanyadhanya October 9, 2015 at 1:54 am Reply

      Thanks Mayuri; where do you live? Some of these blends can even be made at home especially the masala tea.

      Like

  3. Sandhya September 15, 2015 at 11:56 am Reply

    Vanya, an absolute show stopper dessert! Yummy too!

    Liked by 1 person

    • vanyadhanya September 15, 2015 at 1:16 pm Reply

      Thanks dear; it was indeed delicious and a great one for the hot days

      Like

  4. Kalpana Sareesh September 15, 2015 at 4:42 am Reply

    Total yumm nesss ..

    Like

  5. Moni | Thoughts of a Moni August 4, 2015 at 12:57 am Reply

    Hmm I can’t reply on your comment… I used the T2 choc chip chai blend… I can see this working coffee too…

    Liked by 1 person

    • vanyadhanya August 4, 2015 at 1:59 am Reply

      That would ve have been a delicious flavour. Yes, coffee would work too..maybe next time I will try an espresso.

      Like

  6. Moni | Thoughts of a Moni August 3, 2015 at 3:35 am Reply

    So I made this last night and put it in the fridge to set, but this morning I found that it was still very runny. I’ve put it in the freezer for the day, so hopefully it has set in time for dessert tonight… let’s see how it goes..

    Liked by 1 person

    • vanyadhanya August 3, 2015 at 3:56 am Reply

      It has to be put into the freezer; putting in the fridge wont set it as it has a consistency similar to ice cream.

      Like

      • Moni | Thoughts of a Moni August 3, 2015 at 12:08 pm

        So we had it for dessert tonight after I put it in the freezer, it was a huge hit! Thanks for sharing the recipe!

        Liked by 1 person

      • vanyadhanya August 4, 2015 at 12:10 am

        That’s great to hear Moni; happy you enjoyed it. Did you make the masala chai blend yourself or used a ready made one?

        Like

  7. Rafeeda - The Big Sweet Tooth July 20, 2015 at 6:35 am Reply

    I can’t stop looking at those pictures… such an interesting dessert with an even more interesting flavors! Lovely…

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Moni | Thoughts of a Moni July 12, 2015 at 11:35 pm Reply

    This looks delicious! Just a couple of questions – how far ahead of time can you make this? And is there such a thing as it ‘oversetting?’

    Liked by 1 person

    • vanyadhanya July 13, 2015 at 1:26 am Reply

      You can make it ahead of time…..There is no oversetting as such but you will need to keep it outside at room temperature for a couple of minutes before serving. Since its not churned, its slightly more uptight in texture than an icecream.

      Like

      • Moni | Thoughts of a Moni July 13, 2015 at 3:05 am

        Awesome, thanks! I was actually going to make it yesterday for dessert tonight, but I didn’t. I guess I have to wait till next weekend!

        Like

      • vanyadhanya July 13, 2015 at 9:37 am

        Would love to hear your thoughts after making it.

        Like

  9. afracooking July 10, 2015 at 7:16 pm Reply

    Wow – now this really is a fabulous combination of flavours! Love it!

    Liked by 1 person

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