In Italian Tiramisu means, “pick me up”. If you are feeling down maybe this famous Italian dessert will do the trick: layers of luscious mascarpone cream and savoiardi dipped in scented Marsala wine coffee can cheer up anyone.
I made this dessert for my American side of the family on New’s year eve many years ago and ever since then whenever we celebrate together it has become tradition to eat tiramisu.
This is my grandpa’s recipe, he lived to be 99, maybe there is something in the name. I’ve tried many version of tiramisù, but this is the one I prefer and I love the most.
1 lb. mascarpone cheese, don’t use substitutes
36 Savoiardi (lady fingers)
2-1/2 cups strong Italian coffee
1/2 cup dry Marsala wine**
13 Tbsp. sugar
3 Tbsp. un-sweetened cocoa
1. In a large bowl use an electric hand mixer to beat the egg yolks together with the sugar until fluffy.
2. Add the mascarpone cheese and mix it in with a spoon until well combined.
3. Now whip the egg whites until stiff peaks form and then fold them gently into the mascarpone mixture using a spoon. Fold it in by gently lifting the mascarpone mixture from the bottom to the top.
4. Add the cocoa to 1/3 of the mascarpone mixture and mix well.
5. Spread half of the remaining mascarpone mixture without cocoa onto the bottom of the cake dish (My dish is 11-3/4″ x 8-3/4″ and 2-1/2″ deep).
6. Quickly dip both sides of the lady fingers into the espresso coffee and place them over the mascarpone cream.
7. Cover this layer with all the chocolate mascarpone cream.
8. Add the Marsala wine to the rest of the coffee and dip the ladyfingers into it. Place them over the mascarpone chocolate cream and top with the remaining mascarpone cream.
9. Sprinkle the top with cocoa powder through a fine mesh strainer.
10. Refrigerate for 24 hours.
*If you are worried about the health risks from eating uncooked eggs I suggest that you ask your grocer for pasteurized eggs. I know that in the U.S. you can purchase them in a carton.
**In this recipe there’s Marsala wine but you can skip it and add the same amount of coffee instead. I also use decaffeinated coffee when I prepare it for kids.