Tiramisu is an Italian decadent dessert of espresso-soaked ladyfingers layered with mascarpone, cream cheese and sweetened whipped cream. I enjoy making Tiramisu because for such an easy dessert, it has bold flavors with simple ingredients. It requires no baking, perfect make ahead dessert and serves a big crowd. I have gotten so many compliments every time I have served this delicious dessert!
After doing some search I found that Tiramisu means, “pick me up” this reference most likely comes from the espresso/coffee in the dessert.
Traditionally Tiramisu is made with raw eggs or by tempering the egg yolks. But to make it easier I have skipped on the eggs without compromising on taste and texture. The heavy cream will give the Tiramisu a light and airy texture.
Mascarpone is an Italian version of cream cheese, the flavor is very light. I like to mix it with cream cheese just for a little tang flavor that comes from cream cheese. Instead of eggs the whipped cream will give it a airy, fluffy texture.
To beat the heavy whipping cream to stiff peaks make sure you have the cream chilled. You can also chill the bowl & the beaters. Also don’t over beat the cream or it can end up breaking.
Marsala wine is also used in Tiramisu, you can use dark rum, Brandy, coffee liqueur or just leave out the alcohol.
If you don’t have espresso brew strong coffee. I used instant espresso.
You will find 2 varieties of ladyfingers, hard/crunchy or spongy similar to angel food cake. Both will work well. Make sure to lightly dip the ladyfingers in the espresso. If you dip for to long they can break or become very mushy. ladyfingers can be found in the bakery or biscuit aisle.
I dust the Tiramisu with cocoa powder right before serving. Also keep in mind to use regular cocoa powder. There is also a darker Dutch cocoa powder but the color is very dark in my preference for presentation.
Give enough time for this dessert to chill in fridge. I let it chill overnight. It will be much easier to cut the slices for serving.
Any 9×9, 8×8 square or round serving dish will work for this recipe.
- 2 cups instant espresso (cooled)
- 1 8oz mascarpone cheese, room temp.
- 1 8oz cream cheese, room temp.
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream, chilled
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- ⅓ cup powdered sugar
- 1 package of ladyfingers (I used 26 ladyfingers)
- 1-2 tbsp. cocoa powder for dusting when serving
- Make the espresso or brew coffee and let completely cool.
- In a medium mixing bowl mix mascarpone cheese, cream cheese, powdered sugar & vanilla. Set aside.
- In a separate bowl whip heavy cream to stiff peaks just till it holds shape.
- Gently fold the whipped cream into the cheese mixture.
- Dip the ladyfingers in espresso and make 1st layer in serving dish. (don't soak ladyfingers to long, quick dip should be fine)
- Spread ½ of the cream mixture on top of the first layer of ladyfingers.
- Repeat process with the 2nd layer of ladyfingers and cream mixture. ( will end up with 2 layers)
- I let the Tiramisu completely chill in fridge overnight before serving.
- Once chilled and ready to serve dust with cocoa powder using a sieve.