Mid autumn festival is fast approaching. Different sorts of Chinese pastry and baking goods are common items seen during this period. Nowadays, even mooncakes have different variations like snowskin or with Japanese inspired red bean custard fillings. I have never tried making anything close to mooncake, trying it out for the first time while posting the recipe would be rather risky so I picked something different something sweet of course but not one that many people would pick to associate it with mid autumn festival: Tiramisu.
Why did I pick Tiramisu for the mid autumn festival theme? There are many versions of the legend behind the festival but the underlying stories has one thing in common, Chang’e lives in the moon while her husband on earth as a mortal. As for the story of Tiramisu, there are quite some variations as well. There is not confirmed history of how this dessert comes to be so popular nowadays but one of the story I heard was based around the time (winter as well) of the first world war. A wife of a solider made this so-called tiramisu desserts, with espresso and wine for her husband to enjoy while off to battle. With the ingredients, it can be stored easier until the winter condition and taste the same even after a few days. How true is this story? I have no idea but I am still touched by it. So both stories are related to separation of the loved ones and in celebration of such sweet love, Tiramisu is equally … appropriate for mid autumn festival in my opinion!
While I do agree with many who say Tiramisu is one of the easiest desserts to make, to make a good, flavorful Tiramisu is easier said than done. There are so many variations of tiramisu out there nowadays, some prefer it to be served like a sponge cake with firmer texture, some like it in a martini glass enjoyed by the spoonful and some, including myself, prefer to indulge soft slightly runny tiramisu right from the tray with a spoon, a hug spoon that is!
I followed Kate and Giancario Caldesi’s version on the BBC Food to try my luck with the Tiramisu.
- 6 large eggs separated
- 200g caster sugar
- 250g mascarpone cheese
- 250ml cream
- 250ml espresso coffee
- 170ml Marsala Wine (or more if you like it stronger)
- 30-40 Ladyfingers
- Handful of coco powder
- Roll of GLAD Glad Cling Wrap
1 – Whisk the egg yolk and sugar together with an electric whisk. It is recommended that you do the whisking over a pot of simmering water because otherwise RAW EGGS will be consumed. Some prefer it RAW but I rather be safe than sorry. Whisk the mixture over the simmering water until pale and creamy.
2 – Remove it away from the simmering water and then add in the Mascarpone cheese into the mixture. Mix well. Set aside when done.
3 – In another clean bowl, pour the liquid cream into it and get your electric whisk ready. It is HIGHLY recommended that you use an electric whisk for this procedure because we want the LIQUID cream to become FOAMY … it task some heavy whisking!!
4- After some heavy whisking, the cream should turn into something like this.
5 – Fold in the cream into the egg and mascarpone cheese mixture.
6 – To get the espresso coffee, you can either make your own like I did or go and buy several shots from your nearest coffee shops.
7 – Mix the espresso and Marsala wine together. Add more wine if you like to give it more flavor.
8 – Dip the ladyfingers into the mixture and quickly bring it out. Place the first layer of the ladyfingers onto the tray.
9 – Spoon a layer of the cream mixture over the ladyfinger.
10 - Repeat the layering steps.
11 – Many like to use cocoa powder to sprinkle the top but I made my own using some off the shelf dark chocolate bar. If they melt in your hand, eat them!
12 – Sprinkle over the top evenly.
13 – Wrap the whole tray with GLAD Cling Wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 5 hours. Based on my experience, it is best if you can chill it overnight, the longer to chill it the more moist and soft the texture would become, perhaps letting the espresso mixture to be fully absorbed.
Tip : When using GLAD Cling Wrap as container cover, ensure enough pressure has been applied on all sides to prevent the weight of the plastic itself collapsing into the food especially toppings like coco powder. Be generous with the amount of plastic wraps to be used to ensure best results, both presentation and flavors.
Enjoy! GLAD to have helped and shared my experience!