|Olive Garden® Tiramisu
from Chicago, IL
Fresh from TopSecretRecipes.com, Olive Garden is an American Favorite Restaurant and this tiramisu is one of their flagship desserts... enjoy!
In Italian, tiramisu means "pick me up" or "cheer me up." And when you taste the delicious combination of mascarpone cheese (sometimes referred to as Italian cream cheese), cream cheese, lady fingers, espresso and Kahlua it will be hard not to smile. The Olive Garden's tiramisu is very dense, which sets it apart from most tiramisu recipes that require the cheese mixture to be folded into whipped cream. This technique, however, makes a tiramisu that is too fluffy and light to be a decent clone. Besides, the whipped cream hides the cheese flavors, and that's just not a good way to make tiramisu. So get out your double boiler for the egg yolks (a metal bowl over a saucepan of simmering water will also do) and snag some lady fingers (lady fingers are miniature cakes about the size of two fingers side-by-side). You can either make your own espresso, use extra strong coffee as a substitute, or, next time you're at Starbucks, order up a double shot of espresso to go.
3 egg yolks
1/4 cup whole milk
1 cup granulated sugar
3 cups mascarpone cheese
8 ounces cream cheese
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
20 to 24 lady fingers
1/4 cup cold espresso
1/4 cup Kahlua coffee liqueur
2 teaspoons cocoa powder
1. Fill a medium saucepan halfway with water and bring it to a boil over medium/high heat, then reduce heat so that the water is simmering. Whisk egg yolks, milk and sugar together in a medium metal bowl, then place the bowl on top of the saucepan (you can also use a double boiler for this step). Stir the mixture often for ten minutes. After the sugar dissolves the mixture should begin to thicken and turn light yellow. Remove it from the heat to cool.
2. Use an electric mixer to combine mascarpone, cream cheese and vanilla in a large bowl. Mix until mostly creamy, but with a few small chunks remaining.
3. Add egg yolk mixture to the cheese mixture and mix just until well-combined.
4. Combine espresso and Kahlua in a small bowl. Pour this mixture onto a dinner plate. One-by-one touch the bottom of each lady finger in the espresso. The lady finger will quickly soak up the espresso/Kahlua mixture, but you don't want the entire lady finger soaked -- just a dab will do ya. The top half of each lady finger should still be dry. Arrange the soaked lady fingers side-by-side on the bottom of an 8x8-inch serving dish or baking pan.
5. Spoon about half of the cheese mixture over the lady fingers, then add another layer of soaked lady fingers on top of the cheese mixture.
6. Spoon the remaining cheese mixture over the second layer of lady fingers and spread it evenly.
7. Put two teaspoons of cocoa powder in a tight-mesh strainer and gently tap the side of the strainer to add an even dusting of cocoa powder over the top of the dessert.
8. Cover and chill for several hours. To serve, slice the dessert twice across and down creating 9 even portions (the first serving is always the hardest to get out). http://www.topsecretrecipes.com
Makes 9 servings.
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