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Classic Tiramisu Recipe

Classic Tiramisu Recipe

2019-02-15
3.5 Stars (839 Voters)
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Tiramisu Recipe - classic Italian coffee flavored dessert. Made of ladyfingers (savoiardi biscuits) dipped in coffee syrup, rich mascarpone custard, and whipped cream or whipped egg whites. for this time I chose to make my tiramisu with whipped cream but you can make it with whipped egg whites (like the traditional tiramisu). Follow this easy recipe to learn how to make one of the best desserts in the world.

WHAT IS TIRAMISU?

tiramisu recipe

Tiramisu is a coffee flavored traditional Italian dessert. This dessert is made of savoiardi cookies (also known as ladyfingers) dipped in coffee, mascarpone and cream custard, eggs and cocoa powder. The meaning of the word tiramisu is "pick me up" or "cheer me up”.

HO TO MAKE THE BEST TIRAMISU?

Making tiramisu is easier than you think, with these few tips, you will master your tiramisu:

  • Quality Ingredients: Use high-quality ingredients, including fresh eggs, good-quality coffee or espresso, and real mascarpone cheese. The quality of your ingredients will significantly impact the final taste of the dessert.
  • Espresso or Coffee: Brew a strong and flavorful espresso or coffee. This is a crucial element as it imparts the coffee flavor to the ladyfingers. Opt for a good quality coffee to enhance the overall taste of the Tiramisu.
  • Mascarpone Cheese: Ensure your mascarpone cheese is fresh and of good quality. It should be at room temperature to ensure easy blending and a smooth consistency in the cream layer.
  • Balancing Sweetness: Taste your mascarpone mixture before assembling the Tiramisu to ensure it has the right level of sweetness. Adjust the sugar accordingly, keeping in mind that the sweetness will be balanced by the bitterness of the cocoa powder and coffee-soaked ladyfingers.
  • Soaking the Ladyfingers: Dip the ladyfingers briefly into the coffee or espresso mixture. They should be moist but not overly saturated to maintain a good texture in the final dessert.
  • Layering: Assemble the layers evenly. Ensure each layer of ladyfingers is topped with a uniform layer of mascarpone mixture. This creates a well-balanced Tiramisu with consistent flavors in each bite.
  • Chill Time: Allow the Tiramisu to chill in the refrigerator for at least 4-6 hours or, ideally, overnight. This not only sets the layers but also allows the flavors to meld, resulting in a more delicious and cohesive dessert.
  • Cocoa Powder: Dust cocoa powder just before serving to maintain its vibrant appearance. Use a fine sieve to create an even layer without clumps. Serve Chilled: Tiramisu is best enjoyed when served cold. The chilling process not only enhances the flavors but also contributes to the dessert's creamy texture.
  • Experiment with Flavors: While traditional Tiramisu is delightful, don't be afraid to experiment. Add a touch of flavored liqueur or experiment with different types of coffee to create your own unique twist on the classic recipe.

THE HISTORY OF TIRAMISU

tiramisu

The history of Tiramisu is as rich and layered as the dessert itself. Although there are multiple claims to its origin, Tiramisu is widely believed to have emerged in the Veneto region of Italy during the 1960s. One popular narrative attribute the creation of Tiramisu to a confectioner named Roberto Linguanotto, who supposedly invented the dessert at Le Beccherie in Treviso. Another account suggests that it was crafted in the town of Tolmezzo, Friuli, as a tribute to the visit of Cosimo III de' Medici, the Grand Duke of Tuscany. Regardless of its exact genesis, Tiramisu gained popularity and acclaim in the 1980s, rapidly becoming a staple in Italian and international cuisine. Its appeal lies not only in its heavenly combination of coffee-soaked ladyfingers and mascarpone but also in its versatility and adaptability, with various regions and chefs contributing their own unique twists to this beloved dessert. Today, Tiramisu stands as a symbol of Italian culinary artistry, delighting taste buds around the world and securing its place as a timeless classic.

ARE RAW EGGS SAFE TO USE IN TIRAMISU, AND CAN I REPLACE THEM WITH SOMETHING ELSE?

Traditional Tiramisu recipes often include raw egg yolks, but if you have concerns about consuming raw eggs, you can use pasteurized eggs or consider eggless alternatives. Some recipes substitute egg yolks with additional mascarpone or custard powder to maintain the creamy consistency.

If you don’t want to use raw eggs do this: whisk the egg yolks and sugar over a bain marie (double boiler). Whisk constantly, until the sugar is dissolved, and the custard thickens. The temperate of egg yolk should reach 154-158ºF (68-70ºC). Make sure the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water. This process called pasteurizing and it’s killing bacteria’s such as Salmonella.  You can see how I make this process in the video above. This step is totally optional and if you are using fresh eggs there is no real danger. But, many people intimidate eating raw eggs so it’s up to you.

WHAT IS MASCARPONE CHEESE?

Mascarpone cheese is a velvety and indulgent Italian dairy product that adds a luxurious touch to a variety of dishes. Known for its smooth texture and rich flavor, mascarpone is a triple-cream cheese made from cow's milk. With a fat content of around 40% or more, it boasts a high creaminess, making it a delightful addition to both sweet and savory recipes. Unlike cream cheese, mascarpone has a milder taste, offering a subtle sweetness and a hint of tanginess. It excels in desserts like Tiramisu, where its creamy consistency creates a decadent filling. Beyond sweets, mascarpone contributes a luscious richness to savory dishes such as pasta sauces and risottos. Its versatility, coupled with a delicate flavor profile, makes mascarpone a prized ingredient in the culinary world, elevating a wide range of dishes with its sumptuous texture and distinctive taste.

WHAT CAN YOU USE INSTEAD OF MASCARPONE?

Mascarpone is a kind of high fat cream cheese with a slightly sweet taste. There is no other cheese that tastes exactly like mascarpone cheese. Although regular full fat cream cheese has a sour taste, this is the closest replacement. If you are sing cream cheese instead of mascarpone don’t expect to have the same taste, but it will be good enough for some people.         

WHAT TYPE OF COFFEE IS BEST FOR SOAKING LADYFINGERS IN TIRAMISU?

Ideally, use a strong, high-quality espresso for the most authentic flavor. However, if you don't have an espresso maker, you can use strongly brewed coffee as a substitute. You can customize the coffee strength to your liking, but a robust and aromatic brew will enhance the overall taste of the Tiramisu.

HOW FAR IN ADVANCE CAN YOU MAKE TIRAMISU?

Tiramisu can be made 1 to 2 days ahead and stored (covered) in refrigerator. It will keep for up to 4 days in total. You can leave tiramisu out of the refrigerator for up to two-three hours during serving before it will begin to spoil.

how to make tiramisu

WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF ADDING ALCOHOL TO TIRAMISU, AND CAN I OMIT IT?

Alcohol, such as Marsala wine or rum, is added to enhance the flavor profile of Tiramisu. It can be omitted if you prefer a non-alcoholic version or have dietary restrictions. The dessert will still be delicious without it, and you can compensate by adjusting the sweetness to your taste.

TIRAMISU - MADE WITH EGG WHITES OR HEAVY CREAM?

Traditional Tiramisu recipes typically call for the use of egg yolks and egg whites in the creamy mascarpone mixture. However, the use of egg whites or heavy cream can vary based on personal preferences and regional variations. Here's a breakdown:

  • Egg Whites: Some Tiramisu recipes use beaten egg whites to add a light and airy texture to the mascarpone mixture. The egg whites are usually whipped to stiff peaks and then folded into the mascarpone and egg yolk mixture. This incorporation of egg whites can contribute to a slightly fluffier and lighter consistency.
  • Heavy Cream: In some variations, heavy cream (whipped to stiff peaks) is used instead of or in addition to egg whites. This results in a richer and denser mascarpone layer, creating a creamier texture. The heavy cream adds a luxurious quality to the dessert.

It's essential to note that both variations can yield delicious results, and the choice often depends on individual preferences and regional traditions. Some recipes may also combine both egg whites and heavy cream for a balance of lightness and richness.

If you have specific dietary preferences or restrictions, you can choose the version that aligns with your needs. Additionally, some recipes may offer eggless tiramisu alternatives for those who prefer to avoid raw eggs altogether.

WHAT CAN I USE INSTEAD OF HEAVY CREAM IN TIRAMISU?

Instead of heavy cream you can use 4 egg whites. Beat them to stiff peaks, then fold to the mascarpone mixture. This is the Italian traditional way. But I find that the version with the heavy cream is richer, more stable and tastes better. But, again, it’s up to you.

DIFFICULTY
Easy
YIELDS
10
PREP TIME
40 Minutes
WORK TIME
40 Minutes
RECIPE CUISINE
Italian
INGREDIENTS FOR YIELDS
  • 5 large egg yolks
  • ½ cup + 2 Tbsp (125g) Sugar
  • 1 2/3 cups (400ml) Heavy cream, cold
  • 14 oz (425g) Mascarpone cheese, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
  • 1½ cups brewed espresso
  • 36-40 Savoiardi biscuits (Ladyfingers)
  • 2-3 tablespoons coffee liqueur/marsala/brandy
  • Cocoa for dusting

DIRECTIONS

1. Make the coffee syrup: mix hot coffee with the liqueur, pour into a large dish and set aside to cool.

2. Make the filling: place egg yolks and sugar in a large heatproof bowl and set over pot with simmering water (bain marie). Make sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water. start whisking constantly, until the sugar is dissolved, and the custard thickens. The temperate of egg yolk should reach 154-158ºF (68-70ºC). This step is optional (read notes). remove the bowl from heat and let cool.

3. Add the mascarpone, vanilla extract and whisk until smooth.

4. In a separate bowl whip cold heavy cream to stiff peaks. Fold 1/3 of the whipped cream into the mascarpone mixture. Then the remaining whipped cream. Set aside.

5. Assemble: dip each ladyfinger into the coffee mixture for 1-2 seconds. Place in the bottom of a 9x13 inch (22X33cm) dish. If needed, break a few ladyfingers to fit them in the dish. Spread half of the cream over the soaked ladyfingers. Repeat with another layer of ladyfingers and spread the remaining cream on top. Cover and refrigerate the tiramisu for at least 6 hours.

6. Just before serving, dust with cocoa powder.

COMMENTS (16)
  • M
    Maureen
    3/28/2019

    Hi, Can I swap the Mascarpone cheese to regular cream cheese? Cheers.

    Reply
  • S
    Stephanie
    11/27/2019

    Cream cheese is sour, whereas mascarpone is not.

    Reply
  • P
    Paul
    9/27/2019

    Love this video, very easy to follow and not long winded with a lot of talking like some other tutorial videos. I have made tiramisu twice following this recipe and they taste great! Thank you very much for sharing/teaching.

    Reply
  • S
    Sabrina barbier
    4/12/2020

    I cant seem to find any mascarpone cheese in my nearby stores what can I substitute instead ?

    Reply
  • J
    Jyotsana
    1/13/2021

    Hi Sabrina, It is very easy to make the mascarpone cheese at home. you need heavy cream and lemon. You can find the more detailed recipe on the Bigger Bolder Baking YT channel.

    Reply
  • S
    Sofi
    4/18/2020

    What is the easiest way to tell if your custards’ sugar has completely dissolved and when it’s cooled?

    Reply
  • B
    Barbra
    5/30/2020

    THANK YOU for the Tiramisu Recipe - I Have Most of The Ingredients - and ImLooking Forward to TryingYour Recipe Kind Regards Barbra, Sydney 🇦🇺

    Reply
  • R
    Roseli Kishi
    6/25/2020

    Excelente receita, adoro Tiramissu!

    Reply
  • V
    Valerie
    4/16/2021

    Hi. How do I adjust ingredients for 6 inch round pan?

    Reply
  • H
    Heather
    7/25/2021

    Is the coca powder sweetened or unsweetebed?

    Reply
  • A
    Andreea
    10/25/2021

    Hello! How many minutes should I keep the egg yolks at Bain-Marie? I don't have a thermometer.

    Reply
  • F
    Fay
    12/24/2021

    Way too much sugar! Tooooooo sweet. Half sugar will do.

    Reply
  • S
    Sage
    11/23/2023

    I have made this recipe numerous times, and each time it only tastes better! Only thing I have changed is the amount of espresso used, I use 2 cups. I also let my espresso cool before adding my liquor!

    Reply
  • B
    Boni
    12/23/2023

    Best Tiramisu I've ever made! 10/10

    Reply
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