Tiramisu is a decant, no-bake dessert, of espresso-soaked ladyfingers layered between a sweet mixture of mascarpone and liquor filling. This rich, classic treat is often offered on the dessert menu of Italian restaurants. This recipe, I regret to tell you, was not one we ever prepared at home growing up – so you can imagine my family’s elation when my brother’s then girlfriend, Taylor, started preparing this version of the classic and bringing it for holidays and Sunday dinners. Fast forward 15 years, a wedding, and a niece and a nephew later, we can’t imagine a dessert table without her tiramisu.
D ifferent versions of this recipe include heavy cream, or even whole milk, to create the fluffy cream layered between the ladyfingers, but Taylor’s recipe uses a meringue made from the egg whites to add volume to the filling. The result is an incredibly light, yet no less luxurious, tiramisu. Because this recipe does use raw eggs, be sure to purchase the freshest, best quality pasteurized eggs you can find.
- 6 large fresh and pasteurized eggs, separated
- 1 1/2 cup strong espresso coffee
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup amaretto
- 16 oz. mascarpone cheese
- 1 package ladyfingers (24-30 cookies)
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- Brew espresso and pour into a heat proof container. Remove two tablespoons and set aside. Cover and allow the rest of the mixture to chill in the refrigerator until you are ready to use it.
- Place the egg yolks and sugar in a large bowl or into the bowl of a stand mixer. Using an electric mixer or the whisk attachment, beat the egg yolks and sugar together until the mixture becomes pale yellow in color and increases significantly in volume – about 5 minutes.
- To the bowl, add 2 tablespoons of the espresso and the amaretto. Mix just until combined.
- Gently add the mascarpone cheese and mix until the cheese is well combined and the mixture is smooth, for about 3 minutes on medium speed. (If using a stand mixer – transfer the mixture to a separate bowl and set aside. Wash and dry the bowl well before adding the egg whites in the next step).
- In medium sized bowl, or in the cleaned bowl of the stand mixer, add the egg whites and 1/4 teaspoon of sugar. Beginning at medium speed, whip the egg whites until frothy. Increase to a medium high speed and beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form (the amount of time to do so depends heavily on the equipment being used).
- Gently fold the egg whites into the mascarpone mixture.
- Remove your espresso from the refrigerator and ensure that it is at least room temperature or more chilled. Prepare a baking dish and dip the ladyfingers on each side into the espresso, and arrange into the baking dish. If you are using an oblong baking dish, you can break the cookies prior to dipping them in espresso to create a flat layer that covers the dish. Pour enough of the mixture on top to cover the cookies completely. Repeat with remaining cookies and cream. Cover the baking dish tightly with saran wrap and refrigerate over night.
- Remove the baking dish from the refrigerator. Add cocoa powder to a fine meshed sieve and sprinkle over the tiramisu to coat it completely. Serve with hot espresso or a small glass of Amaretto liquor.
Please be aware that this recipe contains raw eggs. Consuming raw or undercooked meats, poultry, seafood, shellfish, or eggs may increase your risk of foodborne illness, especially if you have certain medical conditions or are pregnant.