Tiramisu Italiano , the first time tasted this popular Italian Dessert I was impressed with its creamy rich, satisfying flavor with hints of chocolate, espresso coffee and liquor.
I have seen many versions that have a variety of non traditional ingredients. Here is a classic version with marsala, brandy and Grand Mariner liquors,
Tiramisu in essence means “pick-me-up” in Italian, think of it as the energy drink of desserts with its sugar and caffeine from the strong espresso coffee. According to Anna Maria Volpi, "There are many different stories about the origin of Tiramisu’. It is a layered cake; therefore some people place its origin in Tuscany, where another famous layered Italian dessert is very popular. It is called “Zuppa Inglese” (English Soup). It is not English and it is not a soup. Instead is a simple cake of ladyfingers or sponge cake, soaked in “alkermes” liquor, and alternated layers of chocolate and egg custard." You can read more in her book,“The Timeless Art of Italian Cuisine – Centuries of Scrumptious Dining”, there is extensive information about culinary history of the various regions of Italy.
Espresso coffee, 2 cups, cooled
Large Eggs, 6, separated
Granulated Sugar, 3 to 6 tablespoons to taste
Mascarpone cheese, 1 pound
Marsala Wine, 2 tablespoons
Grand Mariner, 2 tablespoons
Brandy, 2 tablespoons
Bittersweet Chocolate, 8 ounces, finely chopped
Cocoa for dusting
First, toast the ladyfingers in a 375-degree oven for 15 minutes.
Arrange the ladyfingers on a plate and lightly soak them with the cooled espresso. Put half of the soaked ladyfingers in one layer in a rectangular serving dish.
While the ladyfingers are soaking, beat the egg yolks with the sugar until the yolks turn pale in color.
Add the mascarpone, the liquors, and the orange water, and stir gently.
In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites with a wire whisk until they are stiff.
Gently fold the whites into the mascarpone mixture.
Use half of this mixture to make a layer on top of the ladyfingers in the serving dish.
Sprinkle with half of the chopped chocolate.
Repeat the procedure with another layer of soaked ladyfingers, the mascarpone mixture, and chocolate. Dust the top with cocoa
Cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.