Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Modified Classic Tiramisu Recipe

Tiramisu (pronounced "tih-ruh-mee-SOO") is an Italian dessert invented in the 1960's at the El Touga restaurant in Treviso, Italy.

Tiramisu literally means "pick me up" or "carry me up" because of the jolt feeling you get after eating the espresso mixed with alcohol lined with ladyfingers. The ladyfingers are dipped in the mixture of espresso and rum or Marsala and then layered with a custard or chocolate cake base that has been mixed with mascarpone cheese.

Makes 8 - 10 servings.


Cream Filling:

  • 2 cups (480 ml) milk, divided
  • 3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated white sugar, divided
  • 1/4 cup (35 grams) all purpose flour
  • 6 large egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) Marsala or dark rum
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup (57 grams) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 8 ounces (1 cup) (227 grams) mascarpone cheese
  • 32 crisp ladyfingers (Savoiardi)
  • 1 1/2 cups (360 ml) very strong brewed coffee or espresso
  • 1/3 cup (65 grams) granulated white sugar
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) dark rum or Marsala


  • Cocoa Powder for Garnishing
  • 1 ounce (30 grams) semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, grated or chopped
  1. In a medium sized saucepan heat 1 3/4 cups milk and 1/2 cup sugar just until boiling.
  2. In a separate heatproof bowl, whisk together the remaining 1/4 cup milk, 1/4 cup sugar, flour, and egg yolks. (Egg yolk mixture)
  3. When the milk comes to a boil (from step 1), gradually whisk it into the egg yolk mixture. Transfer this mixture into another clean large saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it comes to a boil.
  4. Continue to whisk the mixture constantly for another minute or so or until it thickens.
  5. Remove from heat and strain into a large bowl to remove any lumps that may have formed.
  6. Whisk in the Marsala (or rum), vanilla extract, and butter. Immediately cover the surface of the custard with plastic wrap to prevent a crust from forming. Refrigerate until cold, approximately two hours.
  7. Remove the cooled custard mixture from the refrigerator.
  8. In a separate bowl, with a wooden spoon, beat the mascarpone cheese until it is soft and smooth.
  9. Gently fold, or whisk, the mascarpone into the cold custard until smooth.

Coffee Soaking Syrup: In a large shallow bowl combine the coffee (espresso), sugar, and Marsala (rum). Taste and add more sugar to taste.

To Assemble:
  1. Line a 9 x 5 x 3 inch (23 x 13 x 8 cm) loaf pan with plastic wrap. Make sure the plastic wrap extends over the sides of the loaf pan.
  2. Working with one ladyfinger at a time, dip 8 ladyfingers in the coffee mixture and place them side by side in a single layer over the bottom of the loaf pan.
  3. Spoon 1/3 of the cream filling over the ladyfingers, making sure they are completely covered.
  4. Repeat with another layer of ladyfingers by dipping them (8) ladyfingers in the coffee mixture and placing them on top of the cream. A
  5. Cover the ladyfingers with cream and repeat with another layer of ladyfingers, cream, and ladyfingers.
  6. Cover the Tiramisu with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 6 hours, preferably overnight.
To Serve:
  1. Remove the plastic wrap from the top of the tiramisu.
  2. Gently invert the Tiramisu from the loaf pan onto your serving plate and remove the plastic wrap.
  3. Sift cocoa powder over the top of the Tiramisu and decorate with grated or chopped semisweet chocolate.
de Laurentis, Giada. 'Everyday Italian'. Clarkson Potter/Publishers. New York: 2005.
Sax, Richard. 'Classic Home Desserts'. Houghton Mifflin Company. New York: 1994.

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