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Sep 7, 2007 09:17 AM

My first attempt at tiramisu...please help!!

I am making my first tiramisu for a special occasion and I would want it to taste like I have done it for years. :) If you guys can post some great recepies or give me some great tips on what to definitely do and don't do, what interesting ingredient to try, or on presentation, it will be much appreciated. Thanks hounds!!

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  1. I use different recipes but this one is pretty close to what I've done:

    The biggest tip I'd have is to use real lady fingers, not the soft ones you find in grocery stores. They fall apart if you try to dip them. I don't layer the way in a large pan like that, though. I usually use a cheesecake pan, line the edge w/ tiramisu (like a fence) and then layer inside. Refrigerate and remove the sides.

    1 Reply
    1. re: chowser

      I just tried using the cheesecake pan; it does make for a nice presentation. I thought I had all of the ingredients to make this today, but had no marsala or rum, it being New Years Day I couldn't find a liquor store open. I substituted doesn't taste half bad.

    2. I've made this recipe a couple of times and people really liked it. I think I doubled the mascarpone mixture and then topped the whole thing with whipped cream... make sure that you make this AT LEAST the night before so the flavors have time to marry.

      1. My tip, other than to use the hard lady fingers from package instead of freshly baked, is to be sure to refrigerate it for awhile to let the whipped cream set. If you don't, it'll be too oozy. Also, letting it sit awhile will let the coffee make the lady fingers more moist. Oh, and you good espresso-like coffee. Don't use Starbucks, which is weak and won't give much flavor to your tiramisu.

        1. We live on the edge here in other countries and eat uncooked egg whites. Here's the "Sofia Loren" recipe from I personally prefer amaretto over the orange liqueur but otherwise the proportions are good in this.

          EGGS, 3 separated
          SUGAR, 5 tablespoons
          MASCARPONE CHEESE, 6 ounces
          LADYFINGERS, 1 large package (approximately 36)
          ORANGE LIQUEUR, 1 cup
          ESPRESSO COFFEE, 1 cup
          BITTER CHOCOLATE, 2 ounces, grated
          UNSWEETENED COCOA POWDER, 1/2 cup, or 2 ounces grated bittersweet chocolate

          Combine egg yolks and sugar in a medium-sized bowl and beat well.
          In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites to stiff peaks.
          In a third, larger bowl, combine the egg yolk mixture with the mascarpone, then fold in the egg whites to produce a creamy mixture.
          Arrange a tight layer of ladyfingers in a 9-by-12-inch serving dish.
          Using a spoon, drizzle about half the liqueur and half the espresso over the ladyfingers.
          Cover the ladyfingers with the mascarpone mixture and the grated chocolate, and dust it with a little more than half the cocoa.
          Cover the filling with a second layer of ladyfingers and drizzle with the remaining liqueur and espresso.
          Place the dish in the refrigerator for at least 12 hours (the Tiramisu can be made 24 hours in advance).
          Top with the remaining cocoa before serving.

          3 Replies
          1. re: kathinmadrid

            My own recipe is virtually identical. Sometimes I substitute rum for the orange liqueur and boost the coffee with a little Kahlua. When I can't get good italian ladyfingers, I use langues de chats from my local vietnamese bakery; they work pretty good, too. When all else fails, thinly sliced sponge cake works, too.

            1. re: kathinmadrid

              Ok, my recipe is very close but mine is a little less traditional but soooooooooooo good!! I use Marsala wine instead of espresso or orange liquor. The lady fingers are very quickly dunked/dipped in the marsala during assembling.
              In the end, I always fully cover the Tiramisu with a lot of grated chocolate in stead of the cocoa powder.
              is always a raving succes!

              1. re: kathinmadrid

                I'm with you, the amaretto does make it taste wonderfully decadent. I have a favorite restaurant, and they do it that way, it's pure heaven.

              2. I am told that I make a really good tiramisu. A good tiramisu is a simple dish so you need the best ingredients you can buy. I agree that you must use the dry packaged Lady Fingers from Italy if you can find them. I use freshly grated (microplane) bittersweet chocolate. As others have posted, it should stay in the fridge a minimum of 12 hours.