The word “Tiramisu” literally means “pick me up.” It is, however, so much more than that. When made right, it is an ethereal and sumptuous dessert that melts in the mouth. The traditional version contains Savoiardi cookies or ladyfingers (as they are known in the United States), soaked in espresso and coffee liqueur, layered with a light mixture of mascarpone cheese made rich with egg yolks and light with beaten egg whites. The top is dusted with a light sprinkling of chocolate.
Variations of Tiramisu abound, and the following Fresh Berry Tiramisu is just as ethereal and sumptuous, but takes advantage of the beautiful berries that begin to come out in the springtime and continue through summer. This version is a showstopper dessert that is suitable to serve at the fanciest dinner party, but will also be popular at a backyard barbecue. Fresh Berry Tiramisu, like the traditional version, contains raw eggs in the filling, so it’s important to use only impeccably fresh eggs. No one to date has gotten sick from the eggs, only from eating too many servings at one sitting.
1 1/4 pounds mascarpone cheese, or 2 8-ounce packages cream cheese whipped with 1/2 cup heavy cream
5 eggs, separated, at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
6 cups mixed berries, such as strawberries (sliced), blackberries, blueberries, raspberries
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup berry liqueur, or berry flavored coffee syrup
1 16 oz. package ladyfingers, (or thereabouts)
Fresh mint, for garnish
- Beat the mascarpone in a small bowl until soft.
- In a separate bowl beat the egg yolks with the sugar, until the mixture is pale yellow and fluffy.
- Gradually beat in the mascarpone.
- In a separate bowl beat the egg whites with the salt until they form stiff peaks.
- Fold the egg whites into the mascarpone mixture.
- Sprinkle 1/2 cup sugar over the berries; stir occasionally to dissolve the sugar.
- Mix the lemon juice and 1/2 cup sugar; microwave 1-2 minutes or until the sugar has dissolved.
- Stir in the liqueur. Dip half of the ladyfingers in the mixture and line a 9 x 13" glass casserole dish.
- Cover with half of the mascarpone mixture.
- Spread half of the berry mixture over.
- Repeat, with ladyfingers, then mascarpone mixture, then berries.
- Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate several hours or overnight.
- To serve, cut into squares.
- Garnish each serving with fresh mint.
Amount Per Serving
Calories 485 Calories from Fat 166
Percent Total Calories From: Fat 34% Protein 13% Carb. 49%
Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 18 g
Saturated Fat 10 g
Cholesterol 271 mg
Sodium 390 mg
Total Carbohydrate 60 g
Dietary Fiber 0 g
Sugars 25 g
Protein 16 g
Vitamin A 14% Vitamin C 78% Calcium 0% Iron 11%