What is the most popular Italian dessert? I have asked a few of my international friends and half of them answered: TIRAMISU! The other half responded like "are there even another desserts can Italians can do?". Seriously!
While I'd love to address the fact that Italy offers a wide and extremely delicious variety of desserts - cakes, biscuits and other irresistible delicacies - this post is just about Tiramisu, to start with. I will share the fail-proof, true Italian Tiramisu recipe so you prepare it at home and indulge whenever you'll feel like. The gluten-free version is exactly like the original, with the use of gluten-free lady finger biscuits. In Europe and US there are a few brands that distribute them. If you cannot find them you can use other plain cookies, like shortbread or petit-beurre.
Tiramisu is not complicated and it doesn't take long to prepare. But there are 2 secrets to make sure it turns out the way it's supposed to be. 2 pillars that you cannot compromise on.
1) The first is that REAL MASCARPONE IS KEY. That means Italian Mascarpone. Period. Galbani or Granarolo are some of the Italian brands that distribute internationally. The others don't taste the same, trust me.
2) And the second is to BEAT THE YOLK AND EGG WHITE SEPARATELY. This trick will give you the creamiest and fluffiest Tiramisu cream. Try both ways if you want a scientific proof.
Ready to go?
300 gr Savoiardi (lady fingers biscuits)
85 gr sugar
500 gr mascarpone (for a lighter option 250 gr mascarpone and 250 ml whipped cream)
600 ml coffee (soft taste)
Get your coffee ready first of all. Best coffee option is mocha for sure. 2-3 rounds should be enough. Let it cool down and then move on to prepare the cream.
Place the egg whites in a bowl, and the yolks in a separate bowl. Mix the whites with a hand mixer until they become fluffy. Add 25 gr of sugar and mix until very firm.
Then mix the yolks with the rest of the sugar until very light yellow and fluffy, it should take about 5 minutes. At this point add the mascarpone to the yellow mix and blend in.
Incorporate 1/2 of the egg white to the cream and mix gently with a spatula.
Assemble your tiramisu in 5 layers in a rectangular tin or glass container. Start with a little bit of cream at the bottom, then lay the first layer of lady fingers (soak them in the coffee for a couple of seconds first). Then cover the biscuit with an abundant layer of cream and repeat. One more lady fingers level and then finish with the cream on top.
Sprinkle the top with cocoa powder and then place the tin in the fridge for at least 2 hours, or freeze up to 1 week.
TIPS: In many regions some local liqueur is added to the cream. If you like it, you could use 2 tbsp of Brandy or Italian Marsala wine. If you have a sweet tooth, or you feel the coffee it's too bitter, you can add a table spoon of cane sugar to the coffee before soaking the lady fingers.