Espresso Semifreddo, Candied Hazelnuts, Banana Financier, Cinnamon Chocolate Sauce Featured

Espresso Semifreddo, Candied Hazelnuts, Banana Financier, Cinnamon Chocolate Sauce

These flavor combinations have always been a favorite of ours. Espresso, hazelnut and cinnamon all provide warm, comforting flavors this time of year. The temperature and textural components add much for the senses: warm, cold, smooth, soft and a crunch with each bite. Semifreddo means semi-frozen originating in Italy. Financier is a small cake from France that is made with butter and crushed, ground almonds. Don't miss this dessert available for a short time at Salty's!

Espresso Semifreddo, Candied Hazelnuts, Banana Financier, Cinnamon Chocolate Sauce

Serves 4

Espresso Semifreddo Recipe


1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
4 egg yolks
3 tablespoons espresso (or strong brew coffee)
1 teaspoon Marsala wine
pinch of salt
1/2 cup heavy cream (whipped and reserved in refrigerator)


In a stainless steel bowl combine sugar and egg yolks. Over a simmering double boiler, whisk the mixture vigorously until it has doubled in volume and becomes pale in color, about 4 minutes. Add espresso and Marsala. The mixture will become loose. Continue to whisk until it thickens again, about 3-4 minutes.

Once thickened remove from heat and place the bowl into an ice bath and continue to whisk until completely cool. Or if you have a stand mixer, you can transfer mixture to a mixing bowl and whip on high speed until cool.

With a spatula, carefully fold the reserved whipped cream into the cooled espresso mixture and pour into desired mold or dish, leaving 1-2 inches at top. We like to use an assortment of wine glasses, some with stems, some without stems and some footed. Ramekins or small bowls would work well too! Chill at least 4 hours.

Banana Financier Recipe


1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon flour
1/8 cup almonds, ground
1 tablespoon hazelnuts, toasted and ground
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon sour cream
1/2 banana
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar
1 egg


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine all dry ingredients in a bowl and whisk to combine.

In a small bowl combine sour cream and banana and mix until fairly smooth. Reserve.
Combine butter and sugar in bowl of stand mixer and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add egg just to combine then add half of flour, followed by half the banana mixture. Repeat. Be careful not to over mix. Spoon mixture into a buttered and floured 8x4-inch loaf pan and bake about 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely. Remove from pan and cut into small cubes and reserve.

Candied Hazelnuts Recipe


3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 cup whole hazelnuts

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

In a small bowl combine sugar, cinnamon and juice. Stir and set aside. Place hazelnuts on parchment-lined small sheet pan and place in oven for 5 minutes, just to warm through. Toss warm nuts in juice mixture and let sit for 5 minutes. Strain the nuts from orange juice mixture and place nuts on parchment-lined sheet pan and bake 20-25 minutes. Stir nuts every 5 minutes to keep nuts from sticking to each other. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely. Rough chop and set aside.

Cinnamon Chocolate Sauce Recipe


1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon heavy cream
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon butter
3/4 cup semi sweet chocolate
Pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


In a heavy-bottom pot over low heat combine all ingredients and bring to simmer stirring constantly with a whisk to avoid scorching. Once mixture comes to simmer pour into a container and reserve. To serve, remove espresso semifreddo from refrigerator just before serving. Place a few cubes of banana financier on top, pour cinnamon chocolate sauce over all and sprinkle with candied hazelnuts.

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WORLD CLASS SEEFOOD, Steaks, Service & Smiles!®

Salty's is truly in a class by itself. We work hard to please you with our award-winning Northwest seafood and steak cuisine and perfectly friendly service. Indeed, the diners of OpenTable, the readers of Seattle Weekly, and the Best of Western Washington vote Salty's the top seafood and waterfront view restaurants in both Seattle and Portland year after year.