I did the dessert portion of an Italian cooking class last night (surprised?) and the client wanted a dessert made with lady fingers and masarpone.
Hmmmmm…let me think….
Yup, I made apple pie.
Of course I made tiramisu – literal translation meaning “pick me up”.
I made individual portions for the dozen or so people that were in attendance and realized that most of the time, tiramisu is made in a 9×13″ pan or a springform pan.
So as foolproof as this recipe is, especially my version which is egg-white free, I thought I would put up the recipe and give you a few different options on plating it and making it look special.
But, first, let’s talk about the ingredients and assembly.
You’ll need chopped chocolate and in this recipe, nothing is better than dark chocolate (even bittersweet is good here).
I buy a big block and keep it on hand for things like this or chucks in cookies (or eating when I feel like breaking down a wall for a sweet treat…not that I’ve ever broken down a wall searching for food…but then again, there was that time…)
Next, the cream filling, which here is made up of whipped cream, masarpone (no real substitute here but if you absolutely have to, my only other sub would be quark cheese which is closer in texture to masarpone than cream cheese), egg yolks and sugar. I eliminate the egg white because, to me it seems creamier (aka more decadent) without it and it also eliminates the possibility of deflating if you’re nervous about making this dessert (whipping cream is usually easier to whip than egg whites).
The cookies are traditionally always savoiardi lady fingers (very dry to soak up the coffee mixture).
The coffee mixture is very strong coffee (again, traditionally, espresso) and usually a coffee liqueur or rum. You can omit the alcohol, but why?
Now you can go ahead and assemble it in muffin tins and serve 2 per person or 1 if you are serving other desserts (you can also make this ahead so it is a stellar dessert if you are stressed out about serving sweets after dinner).
But, hey, since we’re talking about making new friends, why not try this?
Place a soaked cookie on a large dish; begin piping around the cookie to completely cover it (it should look like a tiramisu twinkie!).
Put it in the fridge or freezer for a few minutes and then melt a bit of your dark chocolate in a small ziploc bag in the microwave and snip a small corner; on a piece of parchment, make a long squiggly design and place in freezer to harden,
Now, place a piece of parchment covering half the plate and half the tiramisu log; sprinkle with cocoa powder.
Place some chopped chocolate along the left side; next a strip of cookie crumbles, and then place a chocolate squiggle on each dessert.
I am telling you right now, if you have a mother-in-law that doesn’t like you, you should really go make this right now.
Go ahead, call her.
Invite her for coffee…and tiramisu.
She will be your bestie from this day forward.
- 1 c strong coffee (or espresso coffee)
- 2 tbsp granulated sugar, divided
- 1 oz Kahlua liqueur
- 2 cups whipping cream
- 1 tub (450g) mascarpone cheese
- 2 tsp vanilla
- ¼ c powdered sugar
- 2 eggs yolks
- 24 dry lady fingers (Savoiardi Gioia brand), cut in half
- dark chocolate for grating (about ¾ c)
- cocoa powder for dusting (about ⅓ c)
- 12 amaretti cookies, crumbled
- In a shallow bowl, combine hot coffee, 1 tbsp granulated sugar and coffee liqueur; set aside
- In a mixing bowl, beat whipping cream until it holds a soft peak; slowly mix in powdered sugar and beat again for 10 seconds.
- In a small bowl, beat eggs yolks and 1 tbsp granulated sugar until just combined; fold eggs and cheese into the cream mixture and stir gently (carefully not to deflated the whipping cream).
- Line a large muffin tin with plastic wrap; spoon filling into a large piping bag (or Ziploc bag) and snip the bottom corner (you can also use a piping bag)
- Start assembly by quickly dipping half the cookie into the coffee mixture and placing in the bottom of each tin; pipe in enough cream filling to come to the top and then sprinkle with grated chocolate.
- Dip the remainder of the lady finger halves and top the tiramisu; cover with plastic wrap, pressing down firmly to ensure the mixture in compact.
- Place in refrigerator overnight (that is the best way to make sure the cookies are soft and the flavours meld); you can also freeze the mixture for about ½ hour or for up to 3 months (just bring to room temperature when serving.
- When ready to serve, unmold 2 tin per person, sprinkle with amaretti crumbs and dust with powdered sugar.