I say that for two reasons. One, yesterday was a nightmare. I went to my college orientation. After a blazing hot 45 minute walk around campus in 100 degree sunny afternoon Florida weather (the hottest part of the day, mind you) we got to choose our classes. I was most looking forward to this part and it was a huge let down. School starts in two weeks so almost every class I needed was taken.
I stomped out of there blazing mad with only one class for the whole semester. I couldn’t even get my basic math and english classes. I NEED to be a full time student. It’s going to take me forever to get out of here and on my way to culinary school. My dreams are crushed. Or so I thought.
Yesterday I was on this registering website for over 6 hours straight, checking at least every 30 minutes to see if any of the classes I needed were available. I was desperate. But I’m happy to report my drama queen moment of ‘my career is ruined!’ is over and I have all the classes I wanted to take. (Side note: I realize I will probably look back at this post and just laugh at my self thinking ‘wow, what a stupid little freshman I was.’) After this whole fiasco, I thought I’d treat myself to some leftover tiramisu and write this post.
Now we finally get to reason number two. This cake is extraordinary. Everything right down to the ladyfingers is homemade. Of course, you can always use packaged if you’d prefer. If you like coffee (which I really don’t but I still adore tiramisu) then you will love this dessert. It has slightly spongy, plush ladyfingers dipped in rich coffee and topped with a luxurious pastry cream. Which, is traditionally the italian delicacy mascarpone, sugar, and egg yolks spiked with coffee. Add a touch of grated chocolate and you have one lavish dessert.
First you get the soft chew of the lady fingers, lucious smooth creaminess from the marscapone, and a punch of coffee at the end with just the right amount of sweetness. It’s definitely an Italian classic for a reason.
Ingredients: (serves 6)
5 egg yolks*
1/2 cup sugar
24 oz mascarpone cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups freshly brewed coffee, cooled (I used cappuccino)
24 ladyfingers (recipe below)
A chocolate bar, for shaving (I used 70%)
First brew the coffee, and allow to cool to room temperature. In a large bowl, beat together the yolks and sugar until a thick, pale yellow mixture (about 5-6 minutes). Stir in the vanilla, then beat in the mascarpone until combined. Beat in 1/4 cup of the cooled coffee until combined, set aside. Brush each lady finger with the coffee and arrange them in an 8×8 glass baking dish, on one layer (you can break them to make them fit if needed). Then spread 1/2 the mascarpone mixture onto it and arrange another layer of soaked ladyfingers and top with remaining mascarpone mixture. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. When ready to serve garnish the cake with chocolate shavings. Enjoy!
*Use caution when consuming raw eggs due to SLIGHT risk of salmonella or other food-born illnesses. To reduce the risk, use fresh grade A or AA with intact shells. Avoid contact between yolks or whites and the shell. Use shell eggs that have been treated to destroy salmonella, by pasteurization or another approved method.
Original Recipe from Pastry Affair who adapted it from Joy of Baking
Ingredients: (makes 24)
3 large eggs, separated
1/4 cup granulated sugar, divided
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup cake flour, sifted
Powdered sugar, for dusting
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, beat the egg yolks and 2 tablespoons sugar until pale yellow and thick, about 5-6 minutes. Stir in the vanilla extract. Sprinkle the mixture with the sifted cake flour (this is one of the rare occasions when sifted flour is necessary for a light and delicate finished product). Do not stir. Set aside. In another bowl, beat together the egg whites with the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar until stiff peaks form. Fold the egg whites into the rest of the batter, mixing until just incorporated. Fill a pastry bag with the batter and fit with a round 1/2-inch tip (a large plastic bag with the corner cut off will also work). Pipe the batter into lines 3-inches long, keeping a good inch between the cookies on the baking sheet. If the room is hot and humid, chill the baking sheet before piping; it will prevent the ladyfingers from spreading too much due to the heat. Sprinkle the cookies lightly with powdered sugar. Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until the edges are barely browned and the cookies spring back when touched. Remove from the oven and let sit for a few minutes before transferring the cookies to a cooling rack. The cookies will stick to the parchment if allowed to cool on it. Serve immediately.
*Ladyfingers do stale quickly, so it’s best to store them in an airtight container in the freezer to keep for another day. A few minutes at room temperature is all it takes for them to unthaw.