P1000798 (2)b

Wow! Yep, that’s how good this dessert is. It’s the ultimate creamy Italian concoction and has to be tasted to be believed. Tiramisu is a pretty extravagant dish and the cost of the ingredients is going to ensure this is a occasional treat only, which is probably not a bad thing (waist-line wise!).

Anyway, ever the ardent tiramisu devotee, I found this recipe (after exhaustive research) on Ask Chef Dennis (though I’ve adapted the ingredients slightly and added more explicit instructions). I had wanted to find an authentic tiramisu recipe based on a zabaglione which, as it turned out, wasn’t as difficult to make as I had imagined. I didn’t have any of the standard alcoholic beverages on hand, so substituted Bailey’s Irish Cream which imparted a beautiful rich and mellow flavor. I reckon just use whatever liqueur tickles your fancy. Enough said… enjoy. PS: Check out my Mini Tiramisus recipe, if you’re interested in serving 6 glass sized portions.


Serves 8 good sized portions

Ingredients (Click here for unit converter)

  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup liqueur (Baileys, Kahlua, Amaretto, rum, etc.) or wine (Marsala, sherry, etc.) of your choice (optional)
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • Seeds of one vanilla pod (or 1 tsp vanilla extract)
  • 400g mascarpone cheese
  • 400ml heavy whipping cream
  • 20-30 Italian Lady Fingers (Savoiardi)
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup cold espresso
  • 1 Tbsp cocoa for dusting


  1. ZABAGLIONE: Into a glass or metal bowl add egg yolks, vanilla seeds and sugar and whisk to combine. Set bowl on top of a bain marie (double boiler) – making sure the bowl isn’t touching the water – and over a low to medium heat (with water gently simmering) continue to whisk vigorously. When the mixture is foamy, add the liqueur or wine, one tablespoon at a time. Keep whisking until the sauce thickens and increases in volume so that it resembles pourable custard (about 10 minutes). If using a thermometer don’t let the mixture heat above 70C (158F) – or the result is scrambled eggs! It’s ready when the mixture falls in a ribbon and briefly holds its shape on the surface. Remove from the heat and cool mixture (stirring constantly) over ice bath until room temperature. Once cool, whip or lightly beat the zabaglione until thick and lemon colored.
  2. MASCARPONE: Whip mascarpone till soft. Add a large spoonful of the zabaglione into the mascarpone to lighten it, then add the remaining mascarpone to the zabaglione; fold well until combined.
  3. CREAM: In a separate bowl, whip cream to stiff peaks. Gently fold the whipped cream in the mascarpone/zabaglione mixture and set aside.
  4. ASSEMBLY: Dip the lady fingers into the coffee just long enough to get them wet; do not soak them! Once they’re all done, you can give them a second dip if you want a slightly stronger flavor (as I did). Arrange the lady fingers in the bottom of a square baking dish or trifle bowl. Spoon half the mascarpone cream filling over the lady fingers. Repeat process with another layer.
  5. CHILL & SERVE: Refrigerate at least 4 hours or preferably overnight (I tasted the dessert after 4 hours just out of interest – the biscuits were still rather crisp and the flavors hadn’t really amalgamated yet. I served this 24 hours after making it and it was absolutely perfect). Dust with a good quality cocoa before serving.

Food Photography Info: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ47 / Natural lighting


6 thoughts on “Tiramisu

  1. I love the color combination and style of this photo. The Tiramisu looks like it’ll just melt in your mouth and would certainly be fit for a King (actually – fit for a Queen too) 🙂 Great blog and I am looking forward to see many more ‘divine food temptations’.

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