Monday, August 9, 2010

Nonna Rosetta's Tiramisu

My wonderful 18 year old niece Adele, put together this blog post after a visit to her Nonna Rosetta's (my mother in law's) house to learn how to make the classic Italian dessert, Tiramisu.  I love the fact that this blog is providing me with the opportunity to record some of these wonderful recipes.  Thanks for helping with this one Adele and Nonna Rosetta!
If you think the name of this timeless wonder is inviting just wait until you try this traditional recipe straight from God’s mouth himself, except he comes in the form of my Nonna Rosetta. This is an Italian food icon that is always present at family birthdays, gatherings and celebrations and without a doubt causes a moment of pure pleasure and silence (which is extremely rare in a family full of Italians!).

I went investigating how to make the perfect Tiramisu, and Nonna Rosetta was quick to jump at the opportunity to share her knowledge and absolute love of Italian food. Of course being the traditionalist she is, there is never a recipe involved and her philosophy is to ‘cook from the heart’. As cliche as that might seem, it seems to always work, so don’t be scared to add your own twist to this beautiful masterpiece. You can add your own liqueur like a Baileys, whichever you enjoy the most, but it will taste better if it’s a cream based one. I can guarantee that if you have a sweet tooth then this little beauty will be sure to please. 

This recipe makes a lovely sized Tiramisu but you can also double the ingredients to make a larger version.

    •    3 eggs separated
    •    450 grams of mascarpone cheese
    •    ¼ teaspoon of vanilla extract
    •    150 grams of castor sugar
    •    175ml of cold strong coffee
    •    120ml coffee liqueur
    •    18 sponge fingers
    •    Cocoa powder.

1.  Whisk the mascarpone cheese, sugar, vanilla extract and egg yolks until well combined and smooth.

2.  Whip the egg whites until they form soft peaks.

3.  Gently fold egg whites into cheese mix.

4.  Combine the coffee liqueur and coffee into a container. 

5.  Dip the sponge fingers into the bowl of coffee and liqueur (do not make them too soggy or they will break when setting).
6.  Lay the sponge fingers onto dishes or glasses.

7.  Top with cheese mixture.

8.  Repeat with another layer of soaked sponges and cheese mix.

9.  Dust with cocoa powder and shaved cooking chocolate and refrigerate until ready to serve.
It always tastes better when made the day before, as it allows the coffee to be absorbed into the biscuits and the cream layer to set.
Happy Cooking!