Odessa Piper,Chef
L'Etoile Restaurant, 25 North Pinckney, Madison, WI, Phone 608-251-0500


We think this is a quintessential dessert for lovers: alternating hot and cold with passion at the center!

For the Ice Cream:

  • 1 cup passion fruit concentrate
  • 10 egg yolks (reserve whites for final presentation)
  • Three fourths cup sugar
  • 3 cups of heavy cream

Combine the passionfruit with the egg yolks and sugar, and cook till thick, stirring constantly over a boiling waterbath as you would prepare a lemon curd.

Scald the heavy cream in a thick bottomed pot and whisk into the hot curd. Return custard to the heavy pot and cook briefly on medium heat until the custard thickens slightly. Pass through a chinois (extremely fine mesh strainer). Chill, churn and harden ice cream at least 24 hours prior to assembly.

For the Cake: Prepare one recipe of a basic genoise to which 1 teaspoon of grated orange zest has been added. Bake the batter on a sheet pan lined with baking parchment paper. Line individual custard cup molds (heart-shaped if you have them, of course) with plastic film. Cut circles (or hearts) to line the bottom and sides of the cup, fitting tightly. Pack the mold with passion fruit ice cream in the center and seal with a tightly fitting circle (or heart) on the top. Draw the corners of the plastic around the cup and give a little twist to seal the ice cream in the cake. Return to the freezer until you are ready to serve.

Presentation: Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. A convection oven with low fan setting is ideal. Make a meringue from the reserved egg whites using equal parts sugar. Flavor with 1 teaspoon grated orange zest and vanilla. Remove cake from plastic film and turn bottom side up. Frost top and sides about one-half inch thick with meringue, leave base unfrosted. Bake the semi freddo until the meringue is puffed and peaks just start to brown, a matter of minutes.

Serve with Creme Anglaise feathered with hearts drawn with passionfruit and strawberry purees.