Monday, December 11, 2006


Last night we went grocery shopping. Tyler made burritos for everyone, then Elina made dessert. It was delicious. I just had a serving of it today, still delicious. Thought I would share the recipe and some history for everyone to enjoy. I'm not too sure of her specific ingredients/instructions, but this should do justice. Good luck...

Tiramisu. Pronounced tih-ruh-mee-SOO. Literally translated it means "pick me up" or "carry me up". It is an Italian dessert invented in the 1960's at the El Touga restaurant in Treviso, Italy. The classic version is composed of a sponge cake or ladyfingers that are dipped or soaked in a mixture of coffee (espresso) and alcohol (rum or brandy). The next layer is typically a Zabaglione (Zabaione) (pronounced zah-bahl-YOH-nay) combined with mascarpone cheese. Zabaglione is a light, airy wine custard made by whipping egg yolks, sugar and sweet Marsala wine over a water bath. Grated chocolate is then sprinkled over the Zabaglione, followed by a layer of softly whipped cream. The layers are often repeated which is why it is oftentimes called an Italian Trifle.

Note: Mascarpone pronounced mas-kahr-POH-nay is a soft unripened cheese that belongs to the cream cheese family. It comes from Switzerland and Italy and is a thick, buttery-rich, sweet and velvety, ivory-colored cheese produced from cow's milk that has the texture of clotted or sour cream. It delicate and mild flavor is great with fresh fruit and is probably best known for its use in Tiramisu. Produced mainly in the fall and winter it is sold in plastic 8 ounce tubs and can be found in specialty food stores and in the deli section of some grocery stores.

Coffee Mixture:
In a small measuring cup, combine the coffee (espresso), sugar, and rum. Set aside.

Whipped Cream Topping:
In the bowl of your electric mixer, with the whisk attachment, beat the whipping cream, mascarpone, sugar, and vanilla extract until soft peaks form.

20 - 3 inch (7.5 cm) homemade Ladyfingers or 8 Savoiardi ladyfingers

Coffee Mixture:
1/2 cup (120 ml) very strong brewed espresso or coffee
1/2 tablespoon (6 grams) granulated white sugar
2 tablespoons dark rum or brandy

Whipped Cream Topping:
1/2 cup (120 ml) heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup mascarpone
1 1/2 tablespoons (20 grams) granulated white sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Chocolate Topping:
1 ounce (30 grams) semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped

Cocoa Powder for Garnishing (optional)

To Assemble:
You will need 4 - 1 cup (240 ml) long stem wine glasses.
Have ready the ladyfingers, coffee mixture, cream mixture, and chopped chocolate.
For the bottom layer you will need 2 1/2 ladyfingers for each glass. Cut or break the ladyfingers in half. Dip the ladyfingers in the coffee mixture and place 5 ladyfinger halves in the bottom of each glass. Next, in each glass, place 2 tablespoons of the cream mixture and then 1 teaspoon of chopped chocolate. Repeat the whole process, putting 5 ladyfinger halves, followed by the cream mixture, and finishing with the chopped chocolate. Cover the 4 glasses with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for several hours, or even overnight. Just before serving dust with cocoa powder, if desired.

Makes 4 - 1 cup servings.

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