A classic dessert with no cooking required, just some chilling in the fridge. This Italian treat is a real crowd pleaser.
Preparation Time: 25 minutes plus a few hours in the fridge to chill.
Cooking Time: None
Ingredients for 4 to 6 servings
2 eggs, yolks and whites separated
300gr / 10.5 oz. mascarpone cheese at room temperature
1 x tbsp of sugar
2 to 3 drops of vanilla extract or the contents of a vanilla pod
Zest of an orange
100ml / 3.5 oz. of cold strong black coffee (good quality like espresso)
80ml / 2.7 fl. oz. Vin Santo – Italian dessert wine (or Marsala wine is also good)
About 12 savoiardi (Italian Sponge finger biscuits)
Sifted cocoa powder and some grated dark chocolate which contains 70% cocoa solids to decorate.
- Whisk the egg whites with an electric whisk until they reach stiff peaks and set them aside.
- Add the Vin Santo to the coffee in a bowl and set aside.
- Mix the mascarpone, sugar, vanilla and egg yolks in a separate large bowl and whisk with the electric mixer until evenly combined.
- Fold the egg whites bit by bit into the mascarpone mix, adding half of the orange zest also. To do this use a metal spoon, the clean thin edge of the metal makes it easier to work everything together. The important thing is not to lose too much of the air in the egg whites that you have whisked in.
- Put a little of the cream mix in the bottom of your serving dish.
- Dip the biscuits in the coffee and wine mix, making sure that they take up the mixture but that they do not disintegrate. They will take up the liquid very quickly and easily as they are quite dry.
- Lay the biscuits out over the cream mixture in your serving bowl.
- Repeat until the mix is finished or your bowl if full. The last layer should be cream.
- Dust with cocoa powder, rest of the orange zest and grated or shaved dark chocolate.
- Cover the dessert and put it in the fridge. It needs some time, preferably overnight, but 5 to 6 hours is mostly good enough.
Tips and Variations
- Try using Marsala wine or coffee liquer instead of Vin Santo. For something stronger you can go for Amaretto.
- This is a classic Italian dessert. It translates as “Pick me Up”, I’m not going to argue with that! It is actually based on the English trifle. Not often that English cuisine is celebrated by other cultures in this way, although, I am sure that the Italians would say their version is better.
- You can also try a version with half mascarpone and half whipped cream.
- Make as one large tiramisu on as individual portions in glasses.
- Don’t keep this dessert for too long, I tend to use it no later than the next day. The reason being is the use of raw eggs. Although it tastes so good I am sure you will have no worries in this area!
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