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Daring Baker Challenge: Tiramisu

The February 2010 Daring Bakersโ€™ challenge was hosted by Aparna of My Diverse Kitchen and Deeba of Passionate About Baking. They chose Tiramisu as the challenge for the month. Their challenge recipe is based on recipes from The Washington Post, Cordon Bleu at Home and Baking Obsession.

When I saw that the Daring Baker challenge for this month was tiramisu, I was absolutely thrilled! I’ve never had authentic tiramisu before – only tiramisu-flavored things like coffee creamer. I have to admit though that when I saw that this challenge would also involve making my own mascarpone cheese, I was a little nervous. But, it was a lot easier than I thought it would be, especially after I ditched the double-boiler method that just didn’t seem to work for me. This heavenly dessert definitely took a lot of time and preparation, but the result was well worth that effort…and everyone I served it to agreed!

For the mascarpone cheese:

For the zabaglione:

For the vanilla pastry cream:

For the whipped cream:

For the savoiardi cookies:

To assemble the tiramisu:

To prepare the cheese, pour the cream into a skillet and heat on medium, stirring often, until it reaches 190 degrees. (You can also use a double boiler, but that method didn’t work for me).

Once small bubbles push their way to the surface of the cream, add in the lemon juice. Heat the mixture until the cream curdles, stirring frequently. The cream should cover the back of your spoon. Line a sieve with four layers of cheesecloth and set it over a bowl.

Pour the mixture into the sieve. Once cooled completely, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. The cheese will firm up in the refrigerator.

The next day, remove the cheese from the sieve and place it in an airtight container. Store in the refrigerator.

To prepare the zabaglione, heat water in a double boiler. Mix together the egg yolks, sugar, coffee, and vanilla extract in a medium bowl.

Pour the mixture into the top of the double boiler and cook over low heat, stirring constantly until the mixture thickens to the consistency of custard. Let cool to room temperature and then transfer to a storage container. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours.

For the pastry cream, mix together the sugar, flour, and vanilla extract in a small saucepan. Add in the egg yolk and half the milk and whisk until smooth. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly. Add the remaining milk gradually. After about 12 minutes, the mixture will thicken. Push the cream through a mesh strainer to remove the lumps and then transfer the pastry cream to a bowl and cool. Place in an airtight container and refrigerate at least 4 hours.

For the whipped cream, combine the cream, sugar, and vanilla extract in a mixing bowl. Beat on high speed until the mixture holds stiff peaks.

To prepare the cookies, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Gradually add the sugar and continue beating until the egg whites become stiff again.

In a small bowl, beat the egg yolks with a fork and then fold them into the meringue using a wooden spoon. Pour the flour over the mixture and fold it in gently.

Pipe the batter on to the baking sheets, making cookies about about 5″ long with 1″ between the cookies.

Sprinkle half the powdered sugar over the cookies and wait 5 minutes before sprinkling the rest of the sugar. This helps to make the cookies crisp. Bake cookies 10-15 minutes, and then remove them to a rack to cool.

To assemble the tiramisu, mix together the coffee, rum, and sugar in a small bowl.

In a large bowl, beat the mascarpone cheese with a spoon to remove the lumps. Stir in the chilled zabaglione and pastry cream, blending until just combined.

Fold the whipped cream into the pastry cream mixture. Working quickly, dip the cookies into the coffee mix. Transfer the moistened cookies to an 8×8″ baking dish, placing them side by side in a single row. Spread a third of the cream mixture on top of the cookies. Repeat with 2 more layers, then cover dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate the tiramisu overnight. I topped mine with some shredded chocolate, but you can use whatever you like.

Cut into squares and serve within 3 days. You can also freeze the tiramisu until you are ready to serve it.

Posted by on February 27, 2010.

Tags: , , , ,

Categories: desserts & sweets

21 Responses

  1. GREAT job, it looks SO perfect!

    by Jennifer on Feb 27, 2010 at 7:21 pm

  2. Looks lovely.You have a great blog out here:)

    by nina on Feb 27, 2010 at 10:32 pm

  3. Wow….Looks beautiful and delecious!!!! Great job!!

    by Mom R. on Feb 27, 2010 at 11:03 pm

  4. Gorgeous! Love your tiramisu.. It looks beautiful ๐Ÿ™‚

    by Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction on Feb 27, 2010 at 11:13 pm

  5. Beautiful!! Love me some tiramisu. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    by Jessica @ How Sweet on Feb 27, 2010 at 11:45 pm

  6. I loved this challenge too. Definitely was well worth that effort! Great job!

    by Barbara Bakes on Feb 27, 2010 at 11:59 pm

  7. This looks great! I’ll have to check out the Daring Bakers’ challenge. It looks like it’s so much fun!

    by Jen on Feb 28, 2010 at 10:39 am

  8. This looks really good! I haven’t ever made tiramisu, but I sure do love to eat it!

    by shelly (cookies and cups) on Feb 28, 2010 at 3:19 pm

  9. Amazing looking tiramisu. One of the best I’ve seen of all the daring bakers.

    by Eliana on Feb 28, 2010 at 6:46 pm

  10. That looks like a LOT of work, but boy, does it look wonderful, too! Now I know why it’s 7.00 a piece!

    by bridget {bake at 350} on Feb 28, 2010 at 7:40 pm

  11. Mouthwatering!! Love your step-by-step photos! Visual photos makes it easier for peeps like me to follow…:) I’ve not made Tiramisu before!

    by faithy on Feb 28, 2010 at 10:08 pm

  12. I love tiramisu, and even making it the short cut way. Can you tell me if you liked this version better than a simpler recipe that doesn’t require the 2 separate “puddings” to be made to mix with the cheese?

    by Jelli on Mar 1, 2010 at 3:32 pm

  13. Jelli – Honestly, I don’t know – I’ve never made anything close to authentic tiramisu before aside from those cheesecake bars I linked to in the post. If I do though, I’ll let you know! ๐Ÿ™‚

    by Tracy on Mar 1, 2010 at 3:49 pm

  14. I’m so tempted to make this but I don’t know if I’m ‘daring’ enough ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Although I’d need to get a double boiler – maybe I’ll use my giftcard on that ๐Ÿ˜‰

    by Sandy on Mar 1, 2010 at 5:30 pm

  15. I have finally found the photo of the zabaglione! Mine turned out very dark and I wonder if it is because I used Kahlua instead of Marsala….

    by Mrs Ergรผl on Mar 2, 2010 at 4:42 am

  16. It’s amazing me how different all these tiramisu look even the ones that stayed faithful to the traditional coffee flavour. Making that mascarpone was very satisfying I felt, you have a green bowl very similar to mine!

    by Sarah, Maison Cupcake on Mar 2, 2010 at 9:03 am

  17. Looks delish! I loved making the mascarpone too! And I can’t wait to make it again very soon!

    by Kitty on Mar 2, 2010 at 2:35 pm

  18. Your tiramisu looks yummy, and I love your process photos–very detailed and clear. Love your blog!!

    by Jane on Mar 2, 2010 at 5:16 pm

  19. Stunning Tiramisu………

    by Kitchen Butterfly on Mar 4, 2010 at 3:26 pm

  20. Hi! Your tiramisu and recipe looks so gorgeous! i was looking for a homemade tiramisu (everything from scratch) forever, and i’m so glad that i found yours.

    i was wondering if i could get a little bit of clarification for the “assembling tiramisu” section as i was following your step-by-step pictures. do you take 1/3 c of the marscapone and mix it with the entire contents of the zabaglione, pastry cream, and whipped cream? or are there also controlled measurements for that mixture? thanks for your help!

    by Laura on Mar 27, 2011 at 2:54 am

  21. Laura – Yes, beat the mascarpone cheese until smooth and then add in the zabaglione and pastry cream. Fold in the whipped cream. Then, you basically alternate layers between coffee-dipped cookies and the cream mixture. Enjoy!

    by Tracy on Mar 29, 2011 at 9:09 am

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About Sugarcrafter

Hi there! I’m Tracy, and I live in upstate NY. My husband and I met in college and have been married since 2005. A Canning, baking, writing, photography, and even cleaning (yes, cleaning – it can be oddly relaxing), are all things that I enjoy. This blog brings all of those passions together – but […]more →