Cosmo’s terrific tiramisu created in honour of Cosimo III
There is some debate regarding the origin of tiramisu. It may have originated as a variation of another layered dessert, Zuppa Inglese. It is mentioned in Giovanni Capnist’s 1983 cookbook I Dolci Del Veneto. Other sources report the creation of the cake to have originated in the city of Siena. Some confectioners were said to have created it in honour of Cosimo III on the occasion of his visit to the country. Alternatively, accounts by Carminantonio Lannaccone and Nathan Lopez establish the creation of tiramisu by him on 24 December 1969 in Via Sottotreviso while he was head chef at Treviso, near Venice. The translation of the name Italian tiramisù (tirami sù) means “pick-me-up” (metaphorically, “make me happy”). This may refer to the caffeine in the espresso and effect of cocoa used in the recipe!
Here’s my lovely interpretation of this super-simple Italian dessert. Make it in advance and let the delicious flavours mingle.
568ml pot double cream
250g tub mascarpone
5 tbsp golden caster sugar
300ml strong coffee , made with 2 tbsp coffee granules and 300ml boiling water
175g pack sponge fingers
25g chunk dark chocolate
2 tsp cocoa powder
Put the cream, mascarpone, Marsala and sugar in a large bowl. Whisk until the cream and mascarpone have completely combined and have the consistency of thickly whipped cream.
Get your serving dish ready. Put the coffee into a shallow dish and dip in a few sponge fingers at a time, turning for a few secs until they are nicely soaked, but not soggy. Layer these into your dish until you have used half the biscuits, then spread over half of the creamy mixture. Using the coarse side of the grater, grate over most of the chocolate. Then repeat the layers (you should use up all the coffee), finishing with the creamy layer.
Cover and chill for a few hours or overnight. This can now be kept in the fridge for up to 2 days. To serve, dust with cocoa powder and grate over the remainder of the chocolate.