Peach Mascarpone Semifreddo

Serves 8 – 10
Recipe by David Lebovitz, adapted by GKC

Kirsch Syrup
1 cup water
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup kirsch, raspberry liqueur, or peach liqueur (alternatively, you can use 1 teaspoon almond extract)

Peach Filling

6 – 8 peaches (about 2 pounds) peeled, pitted and cut into 1/2 inch dice
3 tablespoons sugar

Mascarpone Filling

2 cups mascarpone cheese
¼ cup heavy cream, to thin the mascarpone
¼ cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 sponge cake, yellow cake or angel food cake (this can be store bought or made from a mix), made in a 9 x 13 size

3 peaches, peeled, pitted, and cut into ½ inch slice
1 tablespoons sugar
¾ cup crushed amaretti cookies, or other almond or shortbread cookie

For the kirsch syrup: In a small saucepan, warm the water and sugar until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat, and then stir in the kirsch or liqueur. Cool.

For the peach filling: In a small bowl, toss the diced peaches with the sugar and let stand until juicy.

For the mascarpone filling: Put the mascarpone in a medium bowl and add the cream to thin it to the consistency of buttercream frosting. Stir in sugar and vanilla and set aside.

To assemble: Slice cake into two pieces to fit into a 2 quart baking dish. Spread ½ cup mascarpone filling evenly at the bottom of the baking dish. Place one of the cake pieces on top and brush evenly with about half of the kirsch syrup (it all soaks). Spread the peach filling over the cake. Spread 1 ¼ cups mascarpone filling over the peaches. Add the second cake layer and soak it with remaining syrup. Spread remaining mascarpone over the cake and refrigerate, uncovered, for about 30 minutes to firm up the top layer of mascarpone. Cover with plastic wrap and keep chilled.

Just before serving, in a bowl, toss peaches with sugar. Let stand for 5 minutes. Scatter peach slices over semifreddo and sprinkle with crushed amaretti cookies. Cut into pieces and serve.

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