I do not know about you guys, but around my house, the best way to say 'Thank you, and i love you!' to a dessert loving husband or sister or friend is by making a Tiramisù from scratch!
By now, it ought to be established that i so do not like the imposter ingredients/parts of recipe that we can opt to use au lieu of making your own stuff from scratch. Why? Uno: that way i know what goes into the food i eat and gives me the reins to play around with and/or dial down the fattening/sweet stuff (without it affecting the taste in a negative way), in turn making it healthier. That way, i'm not ingesting any factory produced-for-the-masses stuff, but have the satisfaction of eating and feeding healthy food minus the preservatives and chemicals. Soooo much better! Secundo: The satisfaction of making your stuff from scratch is unbelievable! i mean, i make my own cream cheese, vanilla extract, mashed potato, and dig this: my very own Tiramisù, savoiardi fingers et al! Yay! Double yay! There's this totally smug and satisfied look on my face right now. and a prayer of gratitude that's been sent upwards. and total glee! Inspiration struck in the form of this ages-ago bookmarked recipe. Thank you Shaheen for making it look not as daunting as i always thought it would be! I love it and is a favorite in the household now! :)
Now, some of you (i certainly did!) may think that a Tiramisù is very difficult to put together considering how fabulous it is to taste. But nope. Let's demystify it a bit here and make it look pretty in the end as well! Yes?
A tiramisù is an Italian gift to mankind of course, and translated, it means 'pick me up'. Interesting huh? It is a coffee and mascarpone cheese concoction. Once you have all the elements ready, it is only a matter of assembling them. So fuss-free, would'nt you agree? If you have guests coming over, make the individual elements three hours prior. Assemble them and leave them in the fridge to soak up the flavors and work their magic!
Addition of coffee liqueur adds a dash of heady flavor but you could do without it and do just as well.
You can make this in an large glass jar or make individual portions of it. I prefer individual portions 'cos they look prettier and are easier to hand out :) Definitely individual portions if you are serving these babies as dessert. So make space in your refrigerator everyone!
A tiramisù has these major components to it: The savoiardi lady finger biscuits, the mascarpone mix and the coffee solution.
Other ingredients you will need are: 1 tablespoon Cocoa powder and 40 g of dark chocolate
(I got 4 generous servings with the following recipe)
To make the savoiardi lady fingers:
-3 eggs at room temperature separated
-80 g powdered vanilla sugar
-60 g flour
-a tablespoon of confectioner' sugar for dusting
Preheat oven to 180 C
Line a baking tray with baking paper and butter it well.
In a bowl, whisk the yolks and sugar till light and creamy.
In another bowl, whisk the egg whites and add in the sugar till soft peaks form.
Fold the flour into the yolk mix with a spatula. Fold this into the egg white mix.
Fill a piping big (with a 1/2 inch snip) with the mix and pipe out finger like shapes onto the lined tray (depending on the serving glass you will be using, pipe out the shapes. I pied mine 3 inches long ). Leave enough space in between each piped shape, giving room to expand when baking.
Sprinkle with confectioner's sugar and pop into the oven and bake for twelve to thirteen minutes. (Keep checking on them to ensure they do not burn). Bake till golden in colour.
Keep aside to cool.
-2 tablespoons Coffee powder
-3 table spoons sugar
-1 cup water
-1 tablespoon Coffee liqueur
Make a cup of strongly brewed coffee. Add the sugar and liqueur and pour it into a shallow flat bottomed pan. Allow to cool.
To make the mascarpone mix:
The idea of raw egg in my mascarpone made me a tad uncomfortable and i decided to deviate from the original recipe here.
-150 ml cream
-5 to 6 tablespoons vanilla sugar (this depends on your taste buds really!)
-350 ml mascarpone cheese at room temperature
Mix the mascarpone cheese with a hand blender to soften the cheese and get it a little aerated. Add in the cream and sugar and continue to blend till it has all mixed and it is a homogeneous mixture. Scoop into a piping bag and rest it in the fridge while you get the the layers ready.
Get the dish ready and to assemble, first goes the finger biscuits. So, take one finger at a time, dip both sides in the coffee solution and lay it out neatly at the bottom of the container. Make sure to do it quick enough cos the longer you hold it in the coffee, it tends to melt away. So..! Continue with the fingers till you get a nice layer of coffee soaked biscuit fingers.
Take the mascarpone bag and pipe out evenly to make sure you get a nice layer of it over the fingers.Spread out using back of spoon.
Grate dark chocolate over the mascarpone.
Repeat the exercise: Soak the biscuit fingers in the coffee solution and layer it over the previous layer. Press it down slightly. Add a dollop of the cheese. Grate some chocolate.
Contimue till you reach the top of the glass. I made three even layers. After the last layer of fingers and chocolate shavings, dust cocoa powder over the mascarpone.
Refrigerate for a couple of hours before digging in! and it's alright, go ahead and lick your spoon!