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Tiramisu is considered a semifreddo (a dessert served cold, but not frozen). This dessert has many variations, the only constant ingredient being the mascarpone cheese.

Tiramisu cake can be prepared in advance and kept in the freezer. Remember to remove it from the freezer enough time in advance to serve it cold at a refrigerated temperature, but not frozen. Sprinkle it with more cocoa powder before serving.

Tiramisu is made in Italy using raw eggs. Today the danger of salmonella is always present, and we prefer to cook the yolks bain-marie and to substitute whipped cream for the egg whites.
for the coffee dip
* 1 -1/2 cups (360 cc) espresso coffee
* 2 teaspoons sugar

for the zabaglione filling
* 4 egg yolks
* 1/2 cup (100 g) sugar
* 1/2 cup (120 cc) Marsala wine (if unavailable, substitute with another sweet wine like Port or Madeira)
* 1 lb (450 g) mascarpone cheese at room temperature
* 1-1/2 cup (360 cc) heavy whipping cream
preparing the coffee dip
Prepare a strong espresso coffee, about 1½ cups (360 cc).
Dissolve 2 teaspoons of sugar in the coffee when the coffee is still hot. Let the coffee cool to room temperature.
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Beat the egg yolks in a heat proof bowl or in the bowl of a double boiler until they become fluffy.
Beat in the sugar . . .
. . . and the Marsala wine.
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Transfer the bowl over a pan of simmering water, and whisk until the cream thickens. The zabaglione will thicken just before it boils, when small bubbles appear.
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Mash the mascarpone cheese in a bowl with a rubber spatula until creamy.  
Add the zabaglione into the mascarpone cheese and beat to mix very well.
Whip the cream. Fold the whipped cream into the zabaglione cheese cream until smooth.
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assembling the cake
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Lightly soak the ladyfingers in the coffee, one at a time. Place them in one layer in a container about 12 x 8 inches, approximately 2 inches deep (or a 30 x 20 cm container, approximately 4 cm deep).
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Evenly distribute half of the zabaglione cream over the ladyfingers.
Repeat the step with a second layer of ladyfingers and top with the rest of the cream.
Sprinkle with the cocoa powder and refrigerate for about 3 – 4 hours.
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preparing the zabaglione filling

Desserts >> Annamaria’s Classic Tiramisu Cake

for the base
* 10 oz (285 g) savoiardi (ladyfinger cookies) (approximately  40)
* 2 tablespoons bitter cocoa powder


1. It is difficult to know exactly how much coffee the ladyfingers are going to absorb. Prepare some extra coffee ready, just in case the quantity is not enough.

2. Dip the ladyfingers in the coffee very fast. Don’t let the cookies absorb too much liquid or they may become too soft and mushy.

3. Remove the mascarpone cheese from the refrigerator early enough. Whip it vigorously until very soft before adding the zabaglione cream.

4. The original Italian recipe doesn’t use zabaglione or whipped cream, but just raw eggs. About 37% of the cases of Salmonella in Italy are from consuming Tiramisu’ with raw eggs. Consuming raw eggs exposes to Salmonella contamination. This is the reason why I am using bain-marie zabaglione and whipped cream instead of raw egg yolks.


Tiramisu is one of the latest additions to “traditional” Italian cooking. Unknown until the late 1970s, when it was invented in the town of Treviso in Northern Italy, it became a world-renowned dessert in merely a decade.

REGION: Veneto

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Annamaria’s Classic Tiramisu Cake Recipe

Coffee, Cheese, Chocolate Tiramisu Cake