Tiramisu is a creamy dessert with a spectacular flavor, originally from Italy. Its ingredients are very simple. All we need is sponge cake, coffee, eggs and sugar. And, of course, it also has its own day on the calendar. Thus, March 21 is the world tiramisu day. And we want to celebrate it in style: knowing the history of this delicious dessert, some curiosities and, of course, its recipe, so you can celebrate tiramisu day as it deserves.
But let’s start at the beginning, what is?
Although it is world famous, you may not know this spectacular dessert. Tiramisu is a typical Italian sweet, consisting of a cold cake, which is assembled in layers. The base to elaborate this dessert consists of a solid and dry ingredient; that we have to moisten in coffee. In addition, the coffee can be flavored, for example, with liqueur. On this base we have to spread a sweet cream. This filling is made with mascarpone cheese and beaten egg whites. We will alternate these two layers until we finish our tiramisu.
The tiramisu began as a very simple recipe, using only eggs whipped with sugar, sponge cake soaked in coffee and a little cocoa powder, which is sprinkled on top.
But, with the passing of time, ingredients have been added that have become fundamental to tiramisu. Some of them are mascarpone cheese, with which the whipped egg white is mixed; and amaretto liqueur, which is mixed with the coffee to make the sponge cakes drunk.
Besides these two additional ingredients that have become the main ingredients for tiramisu nowadays, there are many others. We can find tiramisu of many kinds and flavors. For example, one of the most popular is the lemon tiramisu; we can also find chocolate tiramisu, pistachio, mango, red fruits… We can even find such original straight lines as mojito or beer tiramisu.
Tiramisu Day, welcoming the spring season
In Italy it is said that the date chosen to celebrate tiramisu day, March 21, is no coincidence. For the good weather that spring brings with it, the flowery fields and the longer and longer days give the same feeling of happiness and the same joy as having a piece of tiramisu in front of you.
This celebration has its origin in Italy, in 2017. So it is very recent, but it has certainly come to stay, as it has had a great reception. Although it is true that we do not need many excuses to indulge ourselves with a homemade tiramisu from time to time, on this day tiramisu orders increase considerably in all Italian pastry shops.
The initiative to celebrate tiramisu day came from food writers Clara and Gigi Padovani. Every year they organize online events with other chefs from different parts of the world to make this classic Italian dessert even more famous.
Did you know that the word tiramisu is the fifth best known Italian word outside its borders? Only behind pizza, spaghetti, espresso and mozzarella.
History of the most appreciated Italian sweet
As with most dishes, finding the exact origin of tiramisu is a very complex task. There are many versions about its origin. And there are many towns and cities that claim its creation.
One of the stories about the origin of this dish tells that it comes from a simple and humble dessert made only with beaten egg and sugar. It was an inexpensive and easy to prepare dessert, since they were looking for a simple and energetic sweet for children and the elderly.
Later, around 1970, this sweet dessert was combined with the Venetian custom of eating this cream of egg whites whipped with sugar over sponge-style cookies. This gave rise to today’s tiramisu.
However, there are other stories about the origin of tiramisu that tell the opposite, that it was a dessert created for the aristocracy. It is said that at the end of the 17th century, in Siena, pastry chefs devised a dessert for the aristocrats of the time. Therefore, they chose coffee as the main ingredient, as a symbol of strength; cocoa, as a symbol of virility; and mascarpone cheese, representing humility.
The truth is that this other version is somewhat more distant from reality, since, as we saw at the beginning, the first tiramisu recipes did not include mascarpone cheese.
It is also far removed in time, since gastronomic experts and historians do agree on the date when this dessert was invented, dating it to the second half of the twentieth century.
There are also other stories that link it to nightclubs of the time. They say that it was served as an aphrodisiac for customers to regain strength.
Would you like to celebrate Tiramisu Day by preparing this delicious dessert at home?
And, after seeing the history of this delicious dessert, you’ll want to make it for sure. So we can’t leave without seeing the recipe. We are sure you will be surprised by the simplicity with which we can prepare this sweet.
But first, to prepare an authentic tiramisu, remember that you need coffee. And for this dessert, undoubtedly the best option is to make a good Italian coffee.
How to make an authentic Italian tiramisu
To start our rich dessert, first remember that we need soletilla sponge cakes. They are a type of sweet sponge cake, very spongy and with an elongated and flat shape. You can find them in any supermarket.
These we have to soak them well in the coffee mixture. Remember that, if you want, you can add a touch more flavor to the coffee by using a liqueur of your liking. For example, amaretto will be very good. But, did you know that one of the most used in Italy is a sweet wine, similar to Port? It is another great way to give an extra touch of flavor to our tiramisu.
Or, if you prefer, you can directly omit this ingredient.
Then, between layers of these fluffy and moistened sponge cakes, we are going to put a filling of mascarpone cheese and whipped egg whites. And, little more we need to have our tiramisu ready.
Let’s go through the recipe step by step:
Original tiramisu recipe
- 400 g biscuits
- 500 g mascarpone cheese
- 140 g sugar
- 6 eggs
- 2 cups coffee
- Cocoa powder
- Start with the eggs, separating the whites from the yolks, and place the yolks in a bowl.In the yolk bowl, add 60 g. of sugar and beat well with a whisk until creamy. Add the mascarpone cheese and continue stirring until blended.
- Now, we are going to whip the egg whites, until stiff. If you don't have an electric mixer, you can do it perfectly by hand, although it is quite expensive and tiring, but everything in this life is practice (below, in the notes, we will tell you some tricks to make it whip better if you do it by hand).
- Once they begin to whip, add another 60 g. of sugar little by little, while continuing to whisk.The egg whites will be whipped when, when you turn the bowl over, they do not fall (but be careful if you do this test! turn the bowl slowly so they do not fall to the floor).
- When the egg whites are whipped, we are going to add them little by little to the egg yolk mixture, gently so as not to disassemble them. With gentle movements.
- Prepare the coffee and add two tablespoons of sugar.Once everything is ready, we will begin to assemble our tiramisu.
- Take the biscuits and dip them in the coffee. Make sure they are well soaked but do not break. Place them in the container we have chosen for our tiramisu until the base is covered.Once we have covered the entire base of the container with the biscuits soaked in coffee, we will cover them with a good layer of cream and sprinkle the cocoa, using a sieve, until it completely covers the cream (no white holes are visible).
- Repeat this process as many times as we want our tiramisu to be as tall as we want it to be. Sponge cake with coffee, cream and cocoa.
- Once finished, let it rest in the refrigerator for at least one hour.
NOTE 2: What coffee is best for tiramisu? Do not skimp on buying a quality coffee, there will not be much difference with other cheaper ones and we will notice it a lot in the taste. If possible, make it in an Italian coffee maker, and make it strong and freshly brewed (You can see here how to make the best coffee in an Italian coffee maker for your tiramisu); you can also add a dash of Amaretto to the coffee to aromatize and enhance its flavor.
NOTE 3: A very easy decoration trick but with a visually spectacular result, to get a pastry tiramisu, is to add the last layer of cream with a decorative nozzle and the piping bag. You can give it the shape you want, or make the typical peaks with which the tiramisu is presented, like the ones in the main image of our recipe. And if you are organizing a more formal dinner, you can prepare the tiramisu in individual cups or glasses, they will look beautiful.
NOTE 4: Do you like iced cakes? You can put the tiramisu in the freezer for about 30 minutes, to give it much more freshness and a harder texture, it is also delicious, especially in summer.
What do you think of this wonderful sweet? Do you dare to prepare it at home to celebrate its day?
With this recipe we finish celebrating Tiramisu Day. If you liked it, remember to leave us your comments, ideas, opinions… We love to read them! Also remember to follow us on social networks to keep up to date with all our publications. You can find us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram.