If you follow me on social media or if you have read my Info page, you’ll probably know that I’m Italian. As a true Italian I have probably made a Tiramisù more times than I can remember. It is part of our culture and our traditions and it is probably one of the first desserts I have ever baked. There are different ways to make a good Tiramisù but the three ingredients that must be in it in order to call it a Tiramisù are: coffee, mascarpone and savoiardi biscuits (even though I grew up making it with a different kind of buiscuits, but you can use what ever you prefer).
Last week was my roommate’s birthday and I was looking for something special to bake. I didn’t have much time, so I was looking for something quick and easy but also a bit scenographic. And that was when it hit me. Why not making a Tiramisù? It is one of my favorites dessert that brings back so many memories from my chidhood. I used to make it with my sister and mom usually on sunday mornings. If you are not aware on how a Tiramisù is made, you basically dip your cookies in coffee and you layer them in a tin. You cover the first layer with the mascarpone cream, sprinkle some cocoa powder and chocolate chips on top and repeat untill you have used up all your cookies and cream.
This time I wanted to give it a little twist. So instead of using the biscuits for the layers, I baked and sliced a vanilla cake into four tiny layers and dipped them into a coffee syrup. Best Idea ever! (I have to thank Linda Lomelino from Call Me Cupcake for the amazing idea and recipe) So here it is my take on the Italian Tiramisù! Enjoy!
•250 gr sugar
•1 tsp vanilla
•300 gr all purpose flour
•1,5 tsp baking powder
•100 ml milk
•50 grams butter
•200 ml strong coffee
•100 gr sugar
•250 gr mascarpone cheese
•200 ml heavy cream
•4 egg yolks
•100 gr sugar
•4 egg whites
•2 tsp vanilla
For the decoration
•Grated or chopped dark chocolate (about 100 grams)
•Savoiardi biscuits, about 200 grams
For the vanilla cake:
Preheat oven to 175°C (350 F). Butter and flour a round 20 cm cake pan. Whisk the eggs and sugar until white and fluffy. Heat the milk and butter in a sauce pan until the butter has melted. Gradually add the milk mixture to the batter. Mix the flour and baking powder in another bowl and then add it to the batter. Pour the batter in the prepared pan.
Put the pan on the lower rack in the oven and bake for about 35-45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Let cool on a rack for 15 minutes. Invert the cake onto parchment paper. Let cool for a while and then split the cake into 3-4 pieces.
For the mascarpone cream:
Mix the egg yolks and sugar in a heat proof bowl in a double boiler over simmering water. Mix constantly until the mixture starts to thicken. Remove from heat and let cool. In a dry, clean bowl, whip the egg whites until stiff. In another bowl, whip the cream until stiff peaks form. Mix the mascarpone and the egg yolk mixture. Add the whipped cream and vanilla. Gently fold in the whipped egg whites. Put it in the fridge for a while.
For the coffee syrup:
Make 200 ml of strong coffee or espresso. Mix with sugar in a saucepan. Let boil until all the sugar has melted. Let cool.
Use a spring form which is a little bigger than the cake, about 23-25 cm. Soak all the cake layers in the coffee syrup.
Start by putting the first layer in the bottom of the spring form, then put the savoiardi biscuits all the way around the cake. Evenly spread out the mascarpone cream on the first layer. Sprinkle some cocoa powder and chocolate chips. Repeat the same step until you have used all layers. Finish off with a layer of mascarpone cream on top.
Put in the fridge for at least 4 hours. Before serving, powder with cocoa powder and garnish with grated chocolate.