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recipes  /  Spumoni this recipe: Print
Spumoni cookbook: Lidia's Italian-American Kitchen
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serves: 12 servings

A simple way to make spumoni in the shape you remember is to make them in tall paper cups, like the ones you get when you order a soda. If you prefer, prepare the spumoni in a 6-cup soufflé dish, layering it as described below. Let the finished spumoni stand at room temperature 10 to 15 minutes before inverting it onto a serving plate. Cut it into wedges to serve.


For the Vanilla Ice Cream
2 cups milk
¾ cup sugar
5 large egg yolks
1 vanilla bean, cut in half, or 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the Chocolate Ice Cream
2 cups milk
¾ cups sugar
5 large egg yolks
½ cup cocoa powder

For the Whipped Cream
1 cup heavy cream
¼ cup sugar
12 amarene cherries, cut in half
3 tablespoons pistachio nuts, toasted, cut in small pieces
1 tablespoon candied orange peel, chopped very fine


Prepare the vanilla and chocolate ice cream bases: Whisk 2 cups milk, 3/4 cup sugar and 5 egg yolks together in a heavy 2-quart saucepan until blended. Drop in the vanilla bean and set the saucepan over very low heat. Switch to a wooden spoon and cook, stirring constantly until the mixture is thick, about 10 minutes. (An instant reading thermometer will register 180 degrees F.) Strain the mixture into a small bowl and cool to room temperature with a piece of plastic wrap pressed directly to the surface. Clean the saucepan. Whisk 2 cups milk, 3/4 cup sugar, 5 egg yolks and the cocoa together in the saucepan until blended. Cook and stir as described above until thickened. Strain the chocolate mixture into a separate small bowl and cool as above.

If you have an ice cream freezer, freeze the mixtures separately according to manufacturer's directions and place the finished ice creams in the freezer as you finish. If you don't have an ice cream freezer, place the bowls of ice cream base in the freezer and freeze, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is soft-frozen, in other words, frozen, but soft enough to be spooned out easily.

Whip the cream and 1/4 cup sugar in a chilled bowl until it holds stiff peaks. Gently fold the cherries, nuts and candied peel into the whipped cream. Refrigerate the whipped cream.

Line up 6 10-ounce paper soft drink cups on your work surface. Remove the vanilla ice cream from the freezer. (If it has become too hard to scoop easily, let it stand at room temperature 5 to 10 minutes.) Working quickly, scoop one-sixth of the ice cream into one of the cups and spread it into an even layer over the bottom and sides of the cup. The layer of ice cream should come about 3 inches up the cup and leave enough room in the center for a layer of chocolate ice cream and the whipped cream filling. Place the cup in the freezer immediately and repeat with the remaining ice cream and cups. Freeze until the vanilla ice cream is solid. About 30 minutes.

When the vanilla ice cream in the cups is solid, check the consistency of the chocolate ice cream. If it is too solid to spoon easily, let it stand at room temperature 5 to 10 minutes. Tear off six squares of plastic wrap or wax paper large enough to cover the tops of the ice cream mold and set them close by. Take the flavored whipped cream out of the refrigerator and have it close by. Take one of the cups out of the freezer and spoon a layer of the chocolate ice cream inside the vanilla ice cream, making that layer even with the top of the vanilla ice cream and leaving enough space in the center for the whipped cream filling. Drop enough of the whipped cream into the center of the mold to fill even with the ice creams. Tap the cup on the work surface to settle the layers and prevent any any pockets from forming. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap or wax paper pressed directly to the surface and place immediately in the freezer. Repeat with the remaining cups.

To serve, remove wax paper or plastic wrap. With a sharp serrated knife, cut the cup in half lengthwise from the top of the cup to the top of the ice cream, taking care not to cut into the spumoni. Working carefully, peel the cup from spumoni and invert the spumoni onto a plate. Let them stand 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

Lidia's Italian American Kitchen

One of Lidia's most personal and instructive cookbooks, "Lidia’s Italian-American Kitchen", focuses on Lidia’s own experience in America, and her connection in Italian-American cuisine. It is the story of how Italian-American cooking is a cuisine born of adaptation and necessity, created by new immigrants who tried to recreate the flavors of their homeland using whatever American ingredients they had access to.

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