While very common, tiramisu is not “old school” Italian fare by any means. A quick wiki search shows that the layered dessert is maybe thirty, forty years old max. Which means that when my Gram and I decided to make this, we did not have a family recipe to refer to. Based on everyone’s feedback, I think we managed just fine with Gale Gand’s recipe. It’s ridiculously good. Coffee, whipped cream, chocolate, mascarpone, KAHLUA… I mean how can you go wrong? And the best part is, you don’t even have to turn on your oven. Just get you hand/stand mixers ready. Make this for people you really REALLY like.
Recipe barely adapted from Gale Gand’s for the Food Network. WARNING, this recipe uses RAW eggs, and lots of ‘em. You MUST splurge on the pasteurized, salmonella-free eggs at your grocery store. No poisoning people, K? Also, the gelatin won’t add any flavor to the tiramisu, but it will help your mousse set, so don’t skip it!
7 egg yolks
1 1/4 cups sugar
3 cups mascarpone cheese
1 1/2 Tablespoons unflavored gelatin powder
4 1/2 Tablespoons water
3 egg whites
1 cup heavy cream, whipped
1 1/4 cup, cooled espresso or strongly brewed coffee
1/4 cup Kahlua
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2- 3/4 cup dark chocolate shavings
Using a hand or stand mixer, beat together the egg yolks and one cup of the sugar until color pales and “ribbon stage” is reached. This is at the point in beating when a spatula drawn through the yolks will leave a trail that lasts a few moments. Add mascarpone and mix until combined, set aside.
In a small heat-safe bowl combine gelatin and water. Let sit for 15 minutes. The gelatin will firm. Fill a slightly larger, microwave-safe bowl with an inch or two of water. Heat in microwave until water is boiling, about two minutes. Remove from microwave, placing smaller bowl with gelatin in larger one, creating a double boiler. Stir gelatin well. Gelatin will begin to soften, and then liquefy. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, beat egg whites to soft peaks and then mix in 1/4 cup of sugar. Slowly add gelatin. Whip egg whites to stiff, glossy peaks. Gently fold in whipped cream, and then the egg yolk mixture until combined. Now you’re ready to assemble your tiramisu.
In a small bowl, combine Kahlua and espresso. Quickly dip both sides of the ladyfingers into the espresso mixture and arrange in the bottom of an 8″x10″ pan in a single layer. Ladyfingers should be close to each other, using 10-12 in the first layer. Cover the ladyfingers with half of the mascarpone mixture. With a sifter, dust the layer with 1/2 cup of cocoa powder. Then create a second layer with 10-12 more espresso soaked ladyfingers and the rest of the mascarpone. Sprinkle with chocolate shavings. Chill in the fridge 2-3 hours until the layers have set.
Sooooo good. Thanks Gram for making it with me!