Monday, July 28, 2008

HHDD #21: The Tiramisu That Won Him Over

I love tiramisu. Love it. Whenever I go into Whole Foods, I make sure to include a little square in my purchase. I adore the creamy mascarpone, the coffee and liqueur-soaked lady fingers, and the barest of dustings of cocoa powder. Tiramisu might be the one dessert I eat slowly, savoring each spoonful (vs. greedily stuffing my face.)

How I managed to marry a man that doesn't also share the same love of tiramisu is beyond me. He'll choke it down, sure, but it doesn't sit on quite the same pedestal. Silly man. When Alexandra announced this round of HHDD, I was both elated and worried. I knew I would make it - I knew it - but I wasn't thrilled for the mournful sighs from the hubs ("Can't you make a dessert I like??!?!?!") . How could I make it in a way he would like it, nay, love it??

I was staring at the Donna Hay recipe Alexandra provided... that stare one uses when they don't really see the object of their staring?... and it clicked - I would turn the mascarpone cream into ice cream! I would blend the soaked lady fingers into it! It would be brilliant! My brain clicked back and I set to work. I decided to use the recipe provided, and tweak another D. Hay recipe for mascarpone ice cream - I figured, if I'm going to do this, I'm going the whole Donna Hay Way.

I was sneaky about it, for sure. I didn't tell Dave what I was up to. I didn't even explain why I was buying the lady fingers very well, "O, I need those for ice cream." Such is his trust in me, however, he didn't even ask for more information. Maybe it isn't trust, but he probably knows by now that he doesn't really need to know. He just eats what I make and is happy - that's enough for him. I made the base Saturday morning and poured it into the machine. Thirty minutes later, and it still hadn't reached the soft-serve stage... cold, for sure, but in no way thick enough to pop into the freezer. I let it go another 20 minutes, thinking more mixing might help. Nope - the opposite happened... my mix was back where I started, cold, but completely liquid. I considered throwing in the towel. Instead, I poured it out of the ice cream bowl and into two containers. I hadn't realized just how much was in the machine - easily twice what I normally run. Perhaps if I let the bowl refreeze and then just process half at a time? Bingo - success!

Meanwhile, I soaked the lady fingers in a mix of espresso and coffee liqueur. The delay in getting the ice cream processed meant that the finished product was a little soggy - but it still mixed into the mascarpone ice cream nicely.

Maybe too nicely? As you can see, there aren't too many "chunks" of soaked finger - more like swirls. I contend that this is part of the reason Dave enjoyed the ice cream as much as he did. You see, Dave doesn't drink coffee. Doesn't like it, not the smell, not the taste. The benefit of having the fingers so soaked as to be to blended in dispersed the flavor enough that it was never overwhelmingly coffee-flavored. Each bite was a brilliant blend of tiramisu - I think this might always be the method of production in our home going forward. I get my guilty indulgence, and my dear husband can enjoy it with me - except - now I have to share.

c/o Modern Classics Book 2 by Donna Hay
via Addicted Sweet Tooth

1/2 cup (4 fl oz) strong espresso coffee
1/2 cup (4 fl oz) coffee liqueur
16 sponge finger biscuits, halved widthwise
cocoa powder for dusting

1 1/4 cups (310 g/10 1/2 oz) mascarpone
1 1/2 cups (12 fl oz) (single or pouring) cream
3 tablespoons icing (confectioner’s) sugar, sifted

To make the filling, place the mascarpone, cream and icing sugar in a bowl and whisk until light and creamy. Set aside.

Place the coffee and liqueur in a small bowl and stir to combine. Quickly dip both sides of half the biscuit halves in the coffee mixture and place in 4 glasses or small bowls. Top with half the filling. Dip the remaining biscuit halves, place on top of the cream layer and spoon over the remaining filling. Dust heavily with cocoa and refrigerate until required.

Serves 4.

Mascarpone Ice Cream
c/o Bear Necessities

1 1/2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups water
2 tsp cinnamon
14oz mascarpone
1/2 cup cream

1. Place the sugar and water in a saucepan over low heat and stir until sugar dissolves. Simmer for 3 minutes, then remove from heat, add the cinnamon and leave syrup to cool.

2. Mix the syrup with mascarpone and cream. Place in an ice cream maker and follow manufacturer's instructions until ice cream is thick and scoopable.


Sweet Tooth said...

Well done indeed! I am a huge ice cream fan so I will be back to copy this one for sure.

Thank you for your entry for HHDD,


PheMom said...

Absolutely brilliant! Gotta love those ah-ha! moments!

Grace said...

aren't you crafty! nicely done, this would be enjoyable for just about anyone! but you're right--the drawback to making delicious treats is that there's always less for you. :)

Suzana said...

Brilliant! I love your idea of turning the tiramisu into ice-cream. I really need to get an ice-cream maker!

Teanna said...

Sneaky, sneaky! I LOOOVE Tiramisu, I would jump right in to that ice cream!

Barbara said...

Great idea to turn it into icecream. Sounds delicious.

Bron said...

Will have to try this out with my hubby, as he isn't a fan of the original and coffee either.
Thank you for such an inspiring and delicious entry

Stephanie said...

Holy canoli, is this a great idea or WHAT. Ps- my boyfriend doesn't like tiramisu either..whats wrong with them???