The Bude’s not much of a dessert man. He would prefer wasting calories on a good selection of bourbon or beer with his meal than save some for a decadent treat after his meal. I know-he’s insane, but what can you do when you love a man but support his crazy habits?! He does…..however….have one exception to the rule: TIRAMISU.
Surprisingly the one dessert he can’t resist is the one dessert I cannot stomach. I detest all things coffee or tea related (with the exception of Chai Tea…..that junk tastes like Christmas…yum!) and if you know anything about tiramisu, it’s got a butt load of espresso in it. But-again-I love this man kind of like an insane amount so this year, I decided to try and make him tiramisu myself.
I found this recipe online by Giada De Laurentiis after a quick google search and after reading reviews decided to mesh this recipe with some advice from a good friend from work about a recipe she has used and loved. I hear from my husband and children that the result was delicious, but I couldn’t take more than a bite so I’ll just have to take their word on it.
Either way, it turned out pretty so I figured I’d share the recipe and hopefully my family’s reviews weren’t skewed by their fear of making me cry. It took all of about 20 minutes prep time (and that was with two little “helpers”) and then the majority of its time is inactive in the fridge. I’ll definitely be making it again…..maybe just with a non-espresso version for me!
What you’ll need:
- 6 egg yolks (*the eggs will not be cooked-as is the case in the majority of tiramisu recipes-so be aware that there is always the slight risk for salmonella when consuming this recipe)
- 3 tablespoons of sugar (Giada suggests 2 tablespoons, but that was too bland for me, so you may want to start with 2 tablespoons and sweeten to preference)
- 1 1/2 cups strong espresso, cooled (Some reviewers felt that this wasn’t enough, but it worked for me.)
- 1 1/2 pound mascarpone cheese (Again, you may want to experiment with this on your own, after reading the reviews for Giada’s recipe and hearing what my friend used in her’s, I decided to buy an extra 8 oz container just incase the mixture came out soupy and I ended up needing the extra case to thicken it to my liking.)
- 2 tablespoons dark rum (Giada suggests 2 teaspoons……the upping on this was a total preference call!)
- 24 packaged ladyfingers (This was the perfect amount for me, but many reviewers felt that they needed more, so you may want to buy extra just incase!)
- 1/2 cup bittersweet chocolate shavings, for garnish
Step One: Make Your Espresso (Or buy it!)
Considering that I have never made coffee from a can, let alone ground up the beans…….this was an experience. I had the pamphlet that comes with the espresso machine out the entire time and still almost suffered some serious steam burns a couple times. Luckily, I did this part without the curious fingers of my girls because I would not have been a good line of defense for them! But-I did it! Tiramisu and espresso making all in one day! There’s a first time for everything! I had to make it twice to get enough espresso to measure up to a cup and a half but again…..I had no idea what I was doing, so those of you who are more experienced would probably have an easier time with this step! When it’s done, let it cool while you work on the next few steps.
Step Two: Work Your Eggs & Sugar
Separate your eggs. Some of the reviewers for the Giada De Laurentiis’s recipe expressed that you should use less eggs, some suggested folding the whites back into the recipe. All of them agreed that the 6 yolks called for lead to a runny cream. I agree. I think if you had a more expensive KitchenMaid mixer, you might be able to get the right consistency with the 6 egg yolks, but I decided to just add the extra cheese I had purchased to thicken the mixture.
Once you have separated your eggs, put the yolks into a large bowl and add your sugar. With the $8 electric mixer I had (and the help of my girls which may have slowed things down some), this took about 8 minutes.
Step Three: Add in Your Mascarpone Cheese
Giada calls for one pound of cheese, I chose to use a pound and a half because the mixture was very runny after the first pound. But, as previously noted, I am not a tiramisu eater, so I may have made the mixture too thick? I don’t know…..this looked more like what I’d seen at restaurants? When you have gotten the mixture to the thickness and consistency you want (you’ll want it to be smooth), add 1 tablespoon of espresso and mix until combined.
Step Four: Prepare the Lady Fingers
In a shallow dish, combine the remaining espresso and rum together and mix slightly. Make sure you have the dish that you are going to be putting your tiramisu into before you begin this step. Giada suggests using a 13 by 9 inch baking dish, but after reading the reviews and seeing the elements of the recipe come together, I chose to use an 8 by 3 inch pan. You’ll want to dip the lady fingers into the rum/espresso mixture quickly and put them into your dish. Giada recommends dipping them for 5 seconds, I only did it for about 3. Maybe it was the brand of lady fingers I got, but they were so absorbent, they began to fall apart if I left them in that long, so this is another “feel your way through it” step I guess? You’ll want the entire bottom of the pan to be covered with a layer of ladyfingers. Depending on the size of your dish, you may need to break your cookies into pieces, as you can see from my picture below.
Step Five: Layer & Refrigerate
Pour half of your mascarpone cheese mixture on top of your lady fingers. Layer another row of espresso/rum soaked cookies and then layer the second half of your cheese mixture on the top. AND YOU’RE DONE! (For now!) Cover your beautiful masterpiece with some plastic wrap and stick it into the fridge for at least 2 hours. Giada says you can let it marinade for up to 8. We left our’s for about 4 hours and the cream was definitely nice and thick by the time we cut into it.
Step Six: Chocolate Shavings
When you are ready to serve (or beforehand if you are preparing this for a party), use a grater to cover the top layer with chocolate scrapings. If I were to do this again, I would put chocolate shavings in between the layers as well as on the top, but I do think this added a nice finishing touch! (Plus my kiddos loved it!)
Step Seven: Enjoy!