Is anyone else all about berries right now?
I think it’s because the berry season is so terribly short, but whether it is in smoothies, on salads or in cakes (of course!) I am eating berries at least once a day right now.
Anyway, since we are in the midst of a beautiful heatwave here in the UK right now, I thought I’d combine two of my loves – strawberries and chocolate – in this vegan Chocolate Semi Freddo.
Well, perhaps semi freddo is pushing it a little far – it’s more of a raw and vegan ice cream cake, really. But I like the sound of semi freddo better, so let’s go with that! 😉
Anyway, it looks mighty impressive, but it really is very simple to create and make! Plus, it tastes rich, chocolatey and creamy and cools you down on a glorious summer’s day.
The strawberries came from a wonderful afternoon of berry picking with the boys, where we came home with red faces, full bellies and huge grins! I love berry picking – it seems so British – as it always reminds me of childhood, where I’d pick brambles and hedgerows with my nan.
Anyway, our freezer is now bursting with strawberries to be used, so this cake made complete sense! We each had a large bucket, and all of them got filled with ruby red strawberries which were so ripe they were almost over-ripe.
The cake itself makes the most of simple, store cupboard ingredients – think cashews and coconut milk, as well as creamy avocados – and also uses quality dark chocolate (I used Doisy and Dam) to take it to the next level.
I really think that it makes a huge difference to buy the best quality chocolate you can afford when cooking and baking – you can really taste it in the finished product. However, it’s really up to you!
As always, please tag me if you plan on making this!
Chocolate Semi Freddo With Strawberries
- Makes one cake –
- 2 tins full-fat coconut milk
- 2 cups cashews, soaked 4-6 hours and drained
- 1 1/2 large, ripe avocados, pitted
- 1/2 cup (or more) date syrup, coconut honey or maple syrup
- 200g dark chocolate, melted
- 1/4 cup cacao paste OR coconut oil
- 1 tbsp agar agar powder
- 400g strawberries, hulled and chopped
- 2 tsp vanilla paste
- Large pinch salt
- For the strawberry sauce –
- 200g strawberries, hulled and sliced
- 1-2 tbsp maple syrup
- 1-2 tbsp water
- 1 tsp vanilla paste
- Fresh strawberries, to decorate and serve
Place the coconut milk in a saucepan and heat until warm. Add the agar agar and whisk. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for a few minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
Place all ingredients into a blender and blitz until completely smooth, adding a splash of coconut milk if needed to loosen. Pour into a large silicone mould (I used a bundt mould) and place in the freezer to firm up overnight.
3) Remove your cake at least 20 minutes before serving to allow it to defrost (I allowed for extra time to let it become creamy). While you’re waiting for it to defrost, decorate with more strawberries. Serve and enjoy.