By Fongolicious - August 17, 2012


August is a busy month for me. Four of my siblings' birthdays, plus friends' birthdays too.

Following the success of the rainbow cake, it was time for a "grown-up's" birthday cake. How much more grown-up can you get but with a Tiramisu! Booze, caffeine and sugar - what a combo! This cake was for my sister - who loves her coffee. And is also for me - to experiment - as I've never made Tiramisu before.

The recipe I adapted is from SBS's Italian food safari and followed the decorating method set out my Much-a-Munch. Because this was a first, I followed the recipe to the letter. However, next time around, I'm definitely cutting down the sugar.

This recipe is very velvety and soft! Just lush! I had people coming back for seconds. I also made a fruity kiddy version with no coffee or chocolate. And added passionfruit pulp, raspberries and diluted mango juice. That didn't turn out so great, so no blog post on that one.

The recipe below will make a fairly large tiramisu or two 22cm round ones.

3 egg yolks
60g caster sugar
500g mascarpone
30ml booze (I used a hazelnut liqueur. You could use Tia Maria, Sambuca, white rum… a light liqueur is generally used)
1 packet savoiardi biscuits (500g)
500ml warm coffee
1/4 cup of cocoa (approximately)

Italian meringue
100ml water (if you cut down the sugar, you’ll probably cut down the water to 75ml)
250g caster sugar (I recommend cutting this down to 200g)
3 egg whites

1. Prepare tin by greasing and lining sides and base of a spring form cake tin(s) with a bit of oil and baking paper. If you want to serve the tiramisu in a large trifle bowl, you can skip this step.

2. Place egg yolks and caster sugar in a mixing bowl, and whisk on high until pale and fluffy. Add the mascarpone and, on a medium speed, whisk until it starts to thicken. Be sure not to over-mix as you may split the mascarpone. Add the liqueur(s) and mix until just combined. (Adjust the quantity of liqueur according to personal taste.)  Set aside and make the Italian meringue.

Making the Italian Meringue
3. Add the water to a clean, grease-free saucepan, then slowly add the sugar, making sure that all the grains get wet. Place over a medium heat and bring to soft ball stage. This is about 112 to 114C. The best way to test this is to drop a bit of the sugar syrup into cold water and it will form a soft, flexible ball. If its not hot enough, it will form thread, too far the ball won’t flatten when you squeeze it. Be sure to swirl the pan (not stir with spoon) to avoid crystallising the sugar.

4. Making sure that your mixing bowl is completely grease-free, add egg whites and whisk on high speed until white and fluffy. As your egg whites reaches medium peak, start to slowly add your hot sugar syrup in a steady stream. Once all the sugar has been added, continue to whisk until the Italian meringue has completely cooled.

5. Take your Italian meringue, and carefully fold into the mascarpone mix. Taste and adjust the amount of liqueur if necessary.

6. Take your sponge finger biscuits, and quickly dip them in the coffee. Give the biscuits a light squeeze to remove any excess coffee. Try not to soak your biscuits all the way through.  There should still be a little portion in the middle that has not been soaked in the coffee.

7. Line your tin/bowl with the biscuits. Once the bowl has been completely covered with the biscuits, sprinkle with a some cocoa to lightly coat.

8. Add a little of the mascarpone mix, to cover the biscuit and form a layer above the biscuits. Cover with more coffee-soaked biscuits, and sprinkle again with the cocoa. Place some more mix on top of the biscuits, coming up about another one-third of the way up the bowl. Repeat this process once more, levelling out the mix with the top edge of the bowl.

9. Place in the fridge, and allow the tiramisu to become firm enough to cut, minimum 2 hours.


10. Just before serving, sift cocoa to coat the top. Garnish with some strawberries. Carefully release the tin and remove the paper around the side. Serve immediately.

Note: checkout the links above for the video (SBS food) and for more decorating ideas (much a munch).






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  1. wow!
    guess who's got a craving now :)

  2. Just saw on a TV show, they got chopped hazelnuts, coated with cocoa as topping/garnish... may try that next time