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Tiramisu

ingredients

20 - 24 sponge fingers (lady-fingers),
about 150 g (5 oz)
2 tbsp cold black coffee
2 tbsp coffee essence
2 tbsp Amaretto
4 egg yolks
90 g (3 oz) 6 tbsp caster (superfine) sugar
few drops of vanilla essence
grated rind of 1/2 lemon
350 g (12 oz) 1 1/2 cups Mascarpone cheese (Italian full-fat cream cheese)
2 tsp lemon juice
250 ml (8 fl oz) 1 cup double (heavy) cream
1 tbsp milk
30 g (1 oz) 1/2 cup flaked (slivered) almonds, lightly toasted
2 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tbsp icing (confectioners') sugar

method

1. Arrange almost half the sponge fingers (lady-fingers) in the base of a glass bowl or serving dish.

2. Combine the black coffee, coffee essence and Amaretto and sprinkle just over half the mixture over the fingers.

3. Put the egg yolks into a heatproof bowl with the sugar, vanilla essence and lemon rind. Stand over a saucepan of gently simmering water and whisk until very thick and creamy and the whisk leaves a very heavy trail when lifted from the bowl.

4. Put the Mascarpone cheese in a bowl with the lemon juice and beat until smooth.

5. Combine the egg and Mascarpone cheese mixtures and when evenly blended pour half over the sponge fingers (lady-fingers) and spread out evenly.

6. Add another layer of fingers, sprinkle with the remaining coffee and then cover with the rest of the cheese mixture. Chill for at least 2 hours and preferably longer, or overnight.

7. To serve, whip the cream and milk together until fairly stiff and spread or pipe over the dessert. Sprinkle with the flaked (slivered) almonds and then sift an even layer of cocoa powder so the top is completely covered. Finally sift a light layer of icing sugar over the cocoa.

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