7 Oct

A pick-me-up that really picks you up

Tiramisù, arguably the most popular Italian creamy dessert, combines the flavor of mascarpone cheese, coffee and savoiardi cookies.  The name literally means “pick me up”, metaphorically “make me happy”, and usually the diner’s expression when eating it betrays this emotion.  The “pick me up” may refer to the caffeine in the espresso and the effect of cocoa used in the recipe.  The name may also have another meaning; it is commonly thought that this dessert is stimulating and aphrodisiac!  Tiramisù is not an “exotic dessert” and is not even too difficult to make.  My own tiramisù recipe is a very light  (no raw eggs and no cream), but at the same time it still has a smoothy and creamy  texture. One secret is to use very good, fresh mascarpone (if you can not find fresh mascarpone, I recommend the brandGalbani“) and to prepare the tiramisù one day in advance. If you are reading this recipe, you may have tried traditional tiramisù at least once in an Italian restaurant, but I hope you will find that this tiramisù will be an even more intense sensorsial ecstasy for your palate.

Preparation time: 20 min. + 4 hrs refrigeration time      
650 g (1 ½ lbs) fresh Italian mascarpone cheese
90 g (1 cup) powdered sugar
400 ml cold (and strong!) espresso coffee
3-4 tablespoons rum
200 g (7 oz) Ladyfingers (large Italian savoiardi are best, the bigger the better), about 28-30 cookies
cocoa powder

1. Place the mascarpone and sugar in a medium mixing bowl
2. Mix with an electric mixer for 1 minute or until sugar dissolves
3. Add rum and set aside

4. Dip one Ladyfinger at a time, very quickly, into a bowl of coffee, placing them in a single layer to cover the bottom of an 11-cup serving dish (23 cm x 18 cm, approx. 9 in x 7 in)
5. Spread half the cheese mixture evenly over the layer of sponge fingers
6. Repeat to make one more layer with the remaining Ladyfingers dipped in coffee
7. Spread the rest of the cheese mixture on top
8. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours (overnight is best for the flavors to mingle fully)
9. Before serving, cover by evenly sifting some cocoa powder on top

Note: The traditional tiramisù recipe calls for raw eggs too, but I prefer not to use them for a couple of reasons: a) to reduce cholesterol; b) raw eggs can cause salmonella.  Also, if the mascarpone is very thick, as some pre-packages cheeses are, you may have to add a few tablespoons of cream to make it a little more workable.  -Paola

20 Responses to “Tiramisù”

  1. Pamela Sheldon Johns October 7, 2012 at 3:14 pm #

    This looks easy and delicious!

  2. Ciriaca Erre October 8, 2012 at 1:13 pm #


    • Passion and Cooking October 8, 2012 at 1:34 pm #

      Grazie di cuore Ciriaca per il tuo supporto! Il cibo non è solo nutrimento ma anche divertimento e piacere. Spero di riuscire a trasmettere questo messaggio con il mio blog proponendo ricette rivisitate e presentate con colori forti e caldi, simbolo di passione. Un forte abbraccio

  3. Alliandre October 8, 2012 at 3:57 pm #

    Uh, veramente un blog che fa venire appetito!
    Io più che cucinare, mangio… poi passo le ore a correre sul treadmill per smaltire 😉
    Benvenuta nel rutilante mondo dei blog!

    • Passion and Cooking October 8, 2012 at 7:54 pm #

      Grazie Alliandre! Bene allora buon appetito. Ci vediamo in palestra!!!

  4. Lee Wang October 8, 2012 at 6:58 pm #

    Hi, passion and cooking. my name Lee Wang and i live in Hong Kong. I saw your blog and it looks very interesting. I can’t wait to try to do the tiramisù at home

    • Passion and Cooking October 8, 2012 at 7:56 pm #

      Thanks Lee for your comment! Please let me know if you like my tiramisù recipe. Hope you enjoy it!

  5. Roberta October 8, 2012 at 9:33 pm #

    Cara Paola ecco finalmente il tuo sogno realizzato…..bravissima!bella la presentazione ,le ricette e complimenti anche a Giovanna per la qualitá delle fotografie!spero di vederti di nuovo in palestra!
    Un abbraccio,

    • Passion and Cooking October 8, 2012 at 9:46 pm #

      Cara Roberta, grazie mille per il tuo gentile messaggio.Sono contenta che ti piaccia…nuove ricette da provare:) Arriverderci presto. Un abbraccio

  6. Alliandre October 8, 2012 at 10:58 pm #

    ciao, vi ho fatto un po’ di pubblicità anche su Twitter 🙂

  7. Aaron & Laura Satchell October 9, 2012 at 12:35 am #

    I’ve been lucky enough to sample Paola’s Tiramisu and it’s the best I’ve ever had!
    Thanks for sharing your Italian cooking secrets Paola 🙂

    • Passion and Cooking October 9, 2012 at 6:57 am #

      Thanks Aaron! Keep on following….there are more secrets coming up:)

  8. carolina October 10, 2012 at 8:33 pm #

    Felicidades por un blog que transmite una emoción nueva: disfrutar cocinando, poner los cinco sentidos en lo que se hace para a través de ello dar motivo a la charla, la conversación, y cómo no, gusto al paladar….y todo esto tambien gracias a una fotografía realmente especial. 🙂

    • Passion and Cooking October 10, 2012 at 8:57 pm #

      Grazie tanto per il tuo gentile commento. Mi ha fatto molto piacere leggere quello che hai scritto perchè dimostra che siamo riuscite a trasmettere attraverso le ricette e le fotografia il piacere della tavola!

  9. mt October 10, 2012 at 11:10 pm #

    Elegante, vivace ed attraente Passion and Cooking, proprio come le due ideatrici! Continuate così! Baci


    • Passion and Cooking October 11, 2012 at 6:44 am #

      Grazie Mariateresa. E’ sempre piacevole e stimolante ricevere il commento da una professionista come te:)

  10. Alia Abdulla October 16, 2012 at 2:43 pm #

    Hi, this is Susu’s daughter! Your blog is amazing! I love italian food and your recipes are all of the food that I love and is so well written!<3 Alia xx

    • Passion and Cooking October 16, 2012 at 3:11 pm #

      Hi Alia, I am glad you like my recipes. Italian food is delicious for any occasion. Thanks for your nice comment.
      Ciao, ciao xxx

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