Whenever we have something big happen in our house, I like to make a big, fancy meal to celebrate. Joel’s first day at his new job was on Monday so I had consulted him about what he wanted for dinner (filet mignon, twice baked potatoes and caesar salad) but I wanted to surprise him with dessert. Tiramisu is one of his favorite desserts and something I have never made before so it totally killed two birds with one stone. He got a delicious treat and I got to fulfill my New Years resolution for the month. Plus, it’s also on my Top 100.
I also have to admit that I have never eaten tiramisu so I don’t have anything to compare this to (besides Joel’s opinion). I always looked at tiramisu as intimidating and scary but it truly was really simple to whip up. Plus, who doesn’t love a dessert that you have to make ahead of time. This girl totally does, especially when a fancy dinner is on the menu that requires precise timing.
I searched around for recipes and decided on one from Giada De Laurentiis because you can’t go wrong with her recipes, especially when it comes to Italian specialties. After reading some reviews, I decided to make a few slight changes then dove right in. The original recipe states to make this in a 13×9 pan but I decided to go with an 8×8 to make a denser, creamier tiramisu. I also used strong brewed coffee rather than espresso because that what I had and knew how to make.
I don’t like coffee so I always assumed I wouldn’t like tiramisu but I enjoyed the creaminess of the filling and the slight coffee flavor from the lady fingers. Joel thought it tasted pretty close to restaurant quality tiramisu, the only thing he would have changed is that it was a bit soggy. A bit of the coffee mixture pooled at the bottom of the pan too. I soaked the lady fingers for about 4-5 seconds so I think next time I will only do 2-3 seconds to decrease the soggyness of the tiramisu. Besides that though, it was pretty darn perfect. If you are looking for a simple dessert that will wow, you should definitely give this a try.
recipe from Giada De Laurentiis
6 egg yolks*
3 tablespoons sugar
1 pound mascarpone cheese, softened to room temperature
1 1/2 cups strong espresso or coffee, cooled
2 teaspoons dark rum
24 packaged ladyfingers
1/2 cup bittersweet chocolate shavings, for garnish
1. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer with whisk attachment, beat egg yolks and sugar until thick and pale, about 5 minutes. Add mascarpone cheese and beat until smooth. Add 1 tablespoon of espresso/coffee and mix until thoroughly combined.
2. In a small shallow dish, add remaining espresso/coffee and rum. Dip each ladyfinger into espresso/coffee for only 3 seconds. Letting the ladyfingers soak too long will cause them to fall apart. Place the soaked ladyfinger on the bottom of a 8×8 inch baking dish, breaking them in half if necessary in order to fit the bottom.
3. Spread evenly 1/2 of the mascarpone mixture over the ladyfingers. Arrange another layer of soaked ladyfingers and top with remaining mascarpone mixture.
4. Cover tiramisu with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, up to 8 hours.
5. Before serving, sprinkle with chocolate shavings.
*Raw Egg Warning: Food Network Kitchens suggest caution in consuming raw and lightly cooked eggs due to the slight risk of salmonella or other food-borne illness. To reduce this risk, we recommend you use only fresh, properly refrigerated, clean grade A or AA eggs with intact shells, and avoid contact between the yolks or whites and the shell. For recipes that call for eggs that are raw or undercooked when the dish is served, use shell eggs that have been treated to destroy salmonella, by pasteurization or another approved method.