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Seriously Simple: Easy tiramisu, a fitting finale to an Italian inspired meal

By Diane Rossen Worthington, Tribune Content Agency on

Author Gemma Stafford has written a baking book that has scores of easy and tasty dessert recipes. The title sums up her philosophy pretty well: "Bigger, Bolder Baking: A Fearless Approach to Baking Anytime, Anywhere." Here she shares one of her mum's staple desserts, tiramisu. She enjoyed this frequently as she was growing up, and it is a true taste memory for her. The author recommends using the freshest eggs available or pasteurized eggs to avoid any health issues.

Tiramisu -- literally, "pick-me-up" -- is a beloved Italian dessert. This soft, fluffy confection is easy to prepare and is Seriously Simple since there is no cooking involved. The filling is made with mascarpone, an incredibly rich, soft Italian cheese. Mascarpone has a texture that is a cross between thick creme fraiche and whipped cream cheese, a mildly sweet and slightly acidic flavor. You can usually find it in supermarkets in the cheese section. Otherwise, an Italian specialty food store should have it. It's important to soak ladyfingers in the espresso quickly, or else they will dissolve.

This version adds brandy to the coffee and is dusted with unsweetened cocoa powder just before serving. Tiramisu is very rich, so it's a fitting finale to a relatively light Italian-style meal. You can either prepare this in a 9 x 13-inch serving dish or in individual glass dessert bowls. And best of all you can make it ahead.

Mum's Tiramisu

(Excerpted from "Bigger Bolder Baking: A Fearless Approach to Baking Anytime, Anywhere," © 2019 by Gemma Stafford. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.)

Serves 8 to 10


3 large eggs, separated

1/2 cup (115 grams) sugar

2 cups (16 ounces/450 grams) mascarpone cheese

35 to 40 store-bought ladyfingers


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