Tiramisu is an Italian dessert that means “pick-me-up.” Perhaps a reference to the stimulating effects of the caffeine in the recipe’s espresso and chocolate.

According to one colorful story, a version of the dessert was invented in the 19th century by a maîtresse, “the owner of a brothel,” in Treviso as a sort of an aphrodisiac and recuperating for customers. Her customers, when back home, could still find enough peps to take care of their old ladies.

The recipe

Prep Time:30 mins

Cook Time: 5 mins

Additional Time: 5 hrs

Total Time: 5 hrs 35 mins

Servings: 12

Yield: 1 7×11-inch tiramisu


17 1/2 ounces mascarpone
6 eggs
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 tablespoon Marsala liqueur
10 1/2 ounces lady fingers2
4 cups of espresso coffee
bitter cocoa powder

1/2 oz Rum to spike the coffee



Step 1

Crack the eggs and put the yolks in a large bowl. Set the whites aside. Mix the sugar with the egg yolks using a wooden spoon, or, an electric whisk. 

Step 2

When the yolks are whipped, add the tablespoon of Marsala.

Step 3

Heat the egg yolk, sugar, and Marsala mixture in a bain-marie, soaking the pan with the cream in a larger pan of water about two-fingers high. In this way, the mixture will heat slowly. Stir until the cream coats the spoon. 

Step 4

Add the mascarpone and keep stirring. In the meantime, prepare the coffee, and let it cool in a large bowl. You can add a little sugar if you want. Spike with the rum.

Step 5

Soak the cookies in it, one at a time and on both sides. Place the cookies in a baking dish, until they form an even layer. Then cover them with the egg and mascarpone cream and repeat, until all the cookies are used.

Step 6

Finish with a layer of cream, and let cool in the fridge for 2 hours before serving. Cover the dish with plastic wrap before placing it in the fridge.

Step 7

Remove from the fridge, as well as the plastic wrap, using a sieve, and cover the surface with bitter cocoa powder. Enjoy!

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