Tiramisu

My favourite Italian pick me up

My favourite Italian pick me up - packaged in decadent 1/2 litre tubs

My oldest and best friend, Dani, has a t-shirt that says:  ’Life’s too short not to be Italian’.  She is not, but she speaks it and looks it.  Lucky her.  I neither speak Italian, look Italian, or am Italian, but sometimes I think I should have been, if only for the food.

What I love about Italian food is that everyone in Italy eats well.  Peasant, pauper or prince, all Italians are fiercly protective of their inalienable right to good food.  And why not.  Also, there’s nothing half-arsed about Italian food.  A lemon tart is LEMONY, and if you’re going to make a boozy, creamy coffee trifle, make it BOOZY, CREAMY & full of COFFEE.  Nothing trifling about this famous dessert.

Tiramisu literally means pick me up.  (I’m taking this on faith as I may have mentioned that I don’t actually speak Italian).  I always assumed that the sugar, kahlua, caffeine content was what they were talking about.  But I read recently that the dessert is so good that it makes you swoon, necessitating a ‘pick me up’, preferably by some gorgeous Italiano.  Either way works for me.  The unashamed, over the top, blatant sexiness of the dessert appeals to all my senses.  No doubt about it, for someone who doesn’t eat trifle, this is one of my all time favourite desserts.

There are shortcuts, like using ladie’s fingers or boudoir biscuits.  But as with life in general, I always contend that if something is worth doing it is worth doing properly.  This recipe is a no -shortcuts recipe, but for those un-domestic goddess days I have added any possible shortcuts in brackets.

As with any recipe that is virtually a national treasure, there are always regional differences of opinion.  Unwilling to embroil myself in civil disagreements, I contend merely that this version is my perfect Tiramisu.  Let me know if it’s yours.  xx

3 Responses to “Tiramisu”

  1. on 11 May 2009 at 9:00 am Jeanne

    Holy guacamole… That sounds phenomenal! I must admit that I have always been a bit of a Boudoir biscuit tiramisu maker, but I love the stuff nonetheless. I tcan be realyl hard to find a recipe that stirkes the right balance between sweet, alcoholic and bitter coffee – yours seems to give it a good go :)

    Jeanne’s last blog post..Spring greens with Gorgonzola

  2. on 11 May 2009 at 9:54 am Kit

    It looks pretty darn good! I have had so many versions of tiramisu over the years of working in Italy and never two restaurants making it exactly the same – some stodgy, some almost liquid, but almost always completely delicious.

    Kit’s last blog post..Cheap Shoe Shuffle

  3. on 12 May 2009 at 3:42 am African Vanielje

    Jeanne, for me the whole dessert is about overkill, and I must admit that I nearly filed it under breakfast. It always works as my caffeine hit in the am.

    Kit, I like the somewhere inbetween-ness of this recipe. Soggy sponge is not a favourite, so I like it really chilled and VERY creamy. I wonder if it would make a good icecream?

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