Chocolate fans will cheer this twist on tiramisu: It has ladyfingers infused with cocoa instead of espresso and an ethereal filling of chocolate and cream cheese. One bite and you’ll be transported to your favorite trattoria.
۲ tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, plus more for garnish
۱ ۱/۲ cups heavy cream
۴ ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
۱ bar (8 ounces) cream cheese, room temperature
۳/۴ cup sugar
۲۴ ladyfinger cookies (from a 7-ounce package)
In a medium bowl, mix cocoa powder with 1 1/2 cups very hot water until dissolved; set cocoa mixture aside. In a small microwave-safe bowl, place 1/4 cup cream and chocolate; microwave in 1-minute increments, and stir until melted. Cool to room temperature.
Transfer cooled chocolate mixture to a mixing bowl; add cream cheese and sugar. Using an electric mixer, beat until blended. Add remaining cream; beat chocolate filling until fluffy, about 2 minutes.
Spread 1 cup chocolate filling in the bottom of a 2-quart serving dish. One at a time, dip 6 ladyfingers in cocoa mixture, then arrange in a single layer in dish; spread with 1 cup chocolate filling. Repeat with three more layers, ending with filling.
Another version is fruit tiramisu, where complementary fruit such as berries, peaches or apricots are added. Frozen tiramisu recipes are also available. They include the addition of gelato, frozen yogurt or ice cream in place of the custard. Tiramisu’s popularity over the last three decades have prompted cooks to adapt the essential ingredients used in the dish for a number of recipes such as cakes, ice creams, cheesecakes and puddings.
Much in the same way that the English trifle is often served during holiday celebrations, tiramisu is a wonderful Italian delicacy to add to holiday festivities. Although after trying it once, food lovers may not be able to wait for a special occasion before they decide to serve it again.