Months ago, when this blog was just born, Jasmine introduced me to her version of “tiramisu for children”, which she prepares with milk, chocolate, and tons of sugar, mostly to indulge herself and her sister. They don’t like coffee, so they just swap it out for sugary chocolate milk and insist on calling that calorie bomb a tiramisu.
Since I do like coffee, I make the real deal tiramisu, the proper Italian way. If you are above the age of, say, 12, this is the way you want to go.
Every time I prepare it, my tiramisu is a resounding success. Recently, I whipped up a batch for my roommate and his parents, who were visiting from Brazil, and the three of them ended up gobbling up 1.3 kilos of tiramisu on their own without blinking! I didn’t even get to taste it, it was all gone already.
Before we start with the recipe, a note on alcohol. Tiramisu can be made with or without alcohol, and we mostly omit it, but some people think alcohol really brings out the flavor of coffee, so feel free to add it: a splash of brandy, which is the traditional option, or a spoonful of coffee flavor liqueur as an alternative, will be a very nice addition.
- 400 g ladyfingers cookies
- 5 eggs
- 5 tbsp sugar
- 500 g mascarpone cheese
- 4 shots espresso coffee, diluted with cold water
- a splash of brandy (optional)
- unsweetened cocoa powder, for dusting
- Separate the egg yolks from the whites and set them aside.5 eggs
- In a bowl, use an electric mixer to whisk the egg yolks and sugar for at least 5 minutes until pale, thick and creamy. Stir in the mascarpone gradually, blending all ingredients thoroughly with the electric mixer.5 tbsp sugar, 500 g mascarpone cheese
- In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites to very firm peaks.
- Gently fold the egg whites in the mascarpone cheese and egg yolk mixture, stirring from bottom to top with a wooden spoon.
- Soak the ladyfingers in coffee (you can add brandy, but it's optional) very briefly (they should be moist but not falling apart), and arrange them in an 8x8 inch pan. Alternate layers of cookies with layers of mascarpone cream, repeating until you run out. Finish the tiramisu with a generous layer of mascarpone cream on top.400 g ladyfingers cookies, a splash of brandy (optional), 4 shots espresso coffee, diluted with cold water
- Cover the baking pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least three hours before serving. Dust with cocoa right before serving.unsweetened cocoa powder, for dusting
Tiramisu gets better if you allow some time for the flavors to really blend, so you can keep it in the fridge for 2 to 3 days without an issue, as long as you hold the cocoa powder until serving. You can also freeze tiramisu but we are not great fans of the option. If you do, cover it tightly with a layer of plastic wrap and one of tinfoil, and freeze it for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight, and dust with cocoa powder right before serving as you would for fresh tiramisu.