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The Perfect Tiramisu

This was my first attempt at tiramisu so I wanted to do my research to find the perfect recipe. I like the traditional method and Baileys or beer just wouldn’t cut the mustard. I use madeira lots when cooking and enjoy the flavour so decided to use this, although Pedro Ximenez sherry was tempting too. If you haven’t yet had a swig of this, please do – it’s really good.

Italian Delights

I came across Felicity Cloake’s recipe in the Guardian and decided to accept the fact she had done the research with precision and having read her thoughts, I now had complete trust in her recipe. I had a glass dish that I wanted to use (to be honest, the dish was the reason for the tiramisu) but it was slightly larger than this recipe called for, meaning I only got 2 layers. The biscuits were also slightly dryer than I would have liked (even though I had used all the liquid), so I have added more booze to the recipe and will make it this way next time.

Recipe inspired by Felicity Cloake, from The Guardian. I have merely added more alcohol and chocolate shavings.

Ingredients – Serves 6-8. You will need a circular/square dish about 17cm diameter for 3 layers. I used a 21cm dish and just managed 2 layers.

  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 75g caster sugar
  • 450g mascarpone
  • 4 tbsp sweet marsala (I used Madeira)
  • 4 tbsp dark rum
  • 100ml expresso
  • 16 – 24 savoiardi biscuits, or boudoir if not available
  • Cocoa powder to dust
  • Dark chocolate block to make shavings from

First, whisk 3 of the egg whites, until stiff and set aside. Whisk 4 of the egg yolks with the sugar until light and pale and then whisk in the mascarpone (a little at a time) until smooth and no lumps are visible.

With a large metal spoon, gently fold the egg whites into the mascarpone mixture – trying to avoid knocking air out. Stir the rum and sweet marsala into the coffee and dip each biscuit into the liquid before arranging them in the base of your tiramisu dish.

Spoon a third or a half (depending on the amount of layers you’re doing) of the mascarpone mixture over the biscuits and sprinkle with cocoa and chocolate shavings. Now repeat with another layer of biscuits and mascarpone etc until you have 2 or 3 layers of everything, finishing with the cocoa and shavings on top.

Cover and refrigerate before serving (I left mine overnight).

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