Tiramisu would have to be one of my top three dessert choices – that bitter taste of the coffee contrasted with the sweet creaminess of the mascarpone. Sublime.
And while I’ve already made what I think is the best Tiramisu recipe ever, I wanted to find a quicker, no-fuss version designed specifically for individual portions. I came across Delia Smith’s recipe – a light, mousse-like version with beaten egg white folded into the mascarpone. And, as I don’t need a second invitation to eat any version of Tiramisu, I thought I’d give it a try.
Well, it certainly was quick and easy to make and the result was creamy and luscious. I only made one small adjustment, adding in a teaspoon of vanilla extract which I felt was needed to round out the flavour (my brother and I also thought a bit of orange zest added to the yolk mixture, while not strictly traditional, would have been nice). Would I make it again? Absolutely.. though I’m not sure I’d use rum. To be honest, I’m not a huge fan of hard liquor in my desserts and prefer the softer liqueurs like Kahlua or Bailey’s Irish Creme – they’re sweeter and more mellow. And, in Tiramisu I find they counteract the bitterness of the coffee really nicely. But that’s just me.. no-one else had a problem with it and it was scoffed pretty darn fast. A most enjoyable dessert.
- 3 large egg yolks plus 2 large egg whites (free-range, organic)
- 50 g caster sugar, superfine
- 250 g mascarpone
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- About 24 savoiardi lady fingers – I only needed 12 biscuits
- 150 ml very strong espresso coffee
- 3 Tbsp dark rum or coffee liqueur
- 50 g dark chocolate at least 60% cocoa, grated
- 1 Tbsp cocoa powder
- First put the egg yolks into a medium-sized bowl together with the sugar and beat with an electric hand whisk on high speed for about 3 minutes, or until the mixture is light and pale.
- In a separate large bowl, stir the mascarpone to soften it, add the vanilla extract, then gradually beat in the egg yolk mixture, a third at a time. Between each addition, beat well until the mixture is smooth before adding more.
- Now wash and dry the beaters of the whisk, then in a third separate bowl whisk the egg whites until they form soft peaks. Now lightly fold this into the mascarpone mixture and then put the bowl to one side.
- Pour the coffee and rum into a shallow dish. Next, break the biscuits into a size that will fit easily into the bottom of the glass (Delia halved hers; I quartered mine), and dip them briefly into the coffee mixture, turning them over – they will absorb the liquid very quickly.
- Take your six glasses (they should be about 200ml capacity) and start layering the dessert. Start with 3 of the soaked sponge bits into each glass, followed by a tablespoon of mascarpone mixture, then a layer of grated chocolate.
- Repeat the whole process, putting 5 halves in next (I could only fit 3 halves), followed by the mascarpone, finishing with a layer of grated chocolate and a final dusting of cocoa powder.
- Cover the glasses with cling-film then chill in the refrigerator for several hours (preferably 24 hours for the flavours to amalgamate and the biscuits to soften) and serve straight from the fridge.