Tiramisù

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PRESENTATION

Tiramisu is one of the cornerstones of Italian cuisine, one of the best-loved and most frequently made desserts in the entire world. The origins of tiramisu aren’t entirely clear and more than one city claims to be its birthplace. What we do know for sure, however, is that since 1980, when its name entered into the Italian vocabulary, tiramisu has been a huge hit! Nowadays, it’s one of the most well-known Italian words abroad. But what makes tiramisu so special? We definitely love the fact that it’s so easy to make, with an irresistibly tasty, velvety mascarpone cream layered with ladyfingers soaked in coffee. Some people like to flavor the glaze with Marsala wine, while others prefer to use different liqueurs, but we love it just the way it is, in the purest form, so today we’re bringing you the classic version that’s perfect for any occasion! Although we still haven’t found out exactly who invented the present-day version of tiramisu – some say it’s Ado Campeol, the owner of the famous and history-filled bar Il Becchiere in Treviso – that won’t stop us from sharing our recipe for one of the best tiramisus you’ll ever try! Make it yourself and let us know what you think. And, after trying your hand at the classic version, check out these other tasty variations:

  • Strawberry tiramisu
  • Eggless tiramisu
  • Pistachio tiramisu
  • Tiramisu with pasteurized eggs
  • Lemon tiramisu
  • Nutella tiramisu

INGREDIENTS

Ingredients for a 9x13-inch (20x30-cm) pan
Mascarpone cheese 3 ⅓ cups (750 g)
Eggs 5 (260 g) - (very fresh, medium)
Ladyfingers 8 ¾ oz (250 g)
Sugar ⅔ cup (120 g)
Coffee 1 ⅓ cup (300 g) - (made in a moka pot, with sugar to taste)
For decorating
Unsweetened cocoa powder to taste
Preparation

How to prepare Tiramisù

To make your tiramisu, prepare the coffee using a moka pot to get 1? cups (300 g), then add sugar to taste (we added a teaspoonful) and leave it to cool in a large, shallow bowl. Separate the eggs, being careful to keep the whites totally free of yolk 1 so that they will whip well. Beat the yolks with a hand mixer, adding half of the sugar 2. As soon as the mixture has turned light and foamy, and while the mixer is still running, add the mascarpone a little at a time 3.

Once all the mascarpone has been added, you’ll have a dense, compact cream 4; set this aside. Clean the mixer well and move on to whipping the egg whites 5. Once they’re foamy, pour in the remaining sugar a little at a time 6.

 

Whip the whites to stiff peaks 7; you’ll know they’re ready when you can turn the bowl upside down without the mixture moving. Take a spoonful of the whites and add it to the bowl with the mascarpone cream 8, then stir vigorously with a spatula to dilute the mixture. Next, add the rest of the egg whites little by little, folding them in by mixing very gently from the bottom upwards 9

 

The mascarpone cream is ready 10. Spread a heaping spoonful on the bottom of a glass baking dish measuring 9x13 inches (20x30 cm), ensuring the entire base is covered 11. Now dip the ladyfingers into the cold coffee for a few seconds, first on one side and then on the other 12

 

Then arrange the coffee-soaked ladyfingers in the dish 13, trying to position them all in one direction, to form a first layer of cookies 14. Add another layer of mascarpone cream and level it so the cookies are covered completely 15

 

Continue to add the coffee-soaked ladyfingers 16 and cream 17 in alternating layers, always leveling the surface of the cream 18

Finally, transfer the remaining cream to a pastry bag with a ½-inch (12-mm) plain tip and cover the entire surface of the tiramisu with dabs of cream 19. Sprinkle over the unsweetened cocoa powder 20 and leave the tiramisu to set in the fridge for a couple of hours. Your tiramisu is ready to be enjoyed 21!

Storage

You can keep your tiramisu covered well in the fridge for a couple of days. It can be kept in the freezer for around 2 weeks.

Tips

If you like, you can also add dark chocolate shavings or chocolate chips. Add as much sugar to the coffee as you like! Make your own mascarpone using our recipe. 

Interesting facts

The origins of tiramisu are very unclear and multiple regions claim to be the birthplace of this popular treat: Tuscany, Piedmont, Friuli Venezia Giulia, and Veneto all lay claim to having invented it! There are many legends associated with this dessert, which has even been said to have aphrodisiac qualities! The Tuscan version says tiramisu was created in Siena in the 17th century when some pastry chefs decided to prepare a dessert to celebrate the arrival of the Grand Duke of Tuscany, Cosimo de’ Medici, to the city. They decided that the dessert must honor the duke’s personality, so it had to be a solid, flavorsome treat that was at the same time made from simple ingredients, and, most importantly, it had to be very sweet given Cosimo’s sweet tooth! And so, tiramisu was born, but at the time it was known as “zuppa del duca,” “duke’s trifle,” in homage to Cosimo de’ Medici, who took the recipe to Florence and spread it all over Italy. Legend also has it that this “duke’s trifle” became the preferred dessert of the nobility, who claimed it had aphrodisiac and energizing qualities, hence the name “tiramisu,” which can be translated as “pick me up.” Another story behind the creation of tiramisu says that it was invented by a pastry chef in Turin in honor of Camillo Benso, Count of Cavour, to provide him with sustenance during his difficult struggle to unify Italy. In Veneto, meanwhile, they say that tiramisu was created at the El Toulà restaurant in Treviso, which at the time was located near a brothel, whose clients would go to the restaurant looking for something to give them a pick-me-up.