It’s been a while since I exclusively went for a simple photo on C&T. I’m no photography expert as you well know, and because I’m not you will still see an occasional out-of-focus picture with a recipe. So these days, out of necessity, I am practising on various stuff in my kitchen. This is also helping me to reacquaint myself with the space – I’m finding it to be very beneficial.
One of the things both J and I wouldn’t live without is coffee. We’re not the typical coffee-obsessed persons – we have an Americano and a cappuccino in the morning with our breakfast, and an espresso after lunch. On rare occasions we have another espresso round about four, but that’s that.
A few posts back, I have shown a couple of photos from my attempts at replicating some of Nigella’s cake and pudding recipes from her new book Nigellissima. Here I will tell you how I did it and what equipment I used. It didn’t take much adjusting because I have found that Nigella’s recipes are quite adaptable, even when it comes to baking. Obviously the Tiramisini, which are really individually portioned Tiramisù, are not baked. This makes them even more appealing: not only are they very easy to make, but also they are perfect for when you have friends or family over for supper because there’s no mess when it comes to serving. Less cleaning, less stress. The photo for this recipe in Nigellissima has them in small but elegant martini glasses (serving suggestion indicates quantities for 4, volume for each glass 125ml). I’m afraid I don’t have martini glasses so I served them in ramekins. Please note that this is *not* a good idea for when taking pictures! For this disappointing result see my photo. This doesn’t say anything about the photographer though, so please J – relax.
Anyhow, you really don’t need any complicated kitchen gadget for this. A whisk and bam, job done. What I changed is the quantity of Savoiardi. (Apparently in France they are called boudoirs. In the UK you can also find them by that name, bar the s. Fascinating.) I found that one biscuit wasn’t enough for the coffee mixture to be totally absorbed, and even though the taste was great I made a note to use one and a half to two for next time. The rest is magic. What everyone will suggest here is not to give this dessert to anyone with either a weak immune system, children, or pregnant ladies because of the raw egg. However you can get pasteurised egg whites these days even from the supermarket. Trust the lovely Nigella to make the steps uncomplicated with a guarantee of good results. The chapter Sweet Things makes the book worth having. You will need:
- 100ml espresso
- 2 tablespoons coffee liqueur (15ml each)*
- 4 Savoiardi biscuits (I would definitely use a bit more.)
- 2 egg whites
- 250g mascarpone
- 2 tablespoons honey*
- 2 tablespoons red vermouth (Nigella uses Marsala but I didn’t have any. Used vermouth instead and it worked well.)
- 1 teaspoon good cocoa powder (*not* drinking chocolate please!!)
- Brew the espresso, tip it into a jug, add the coffee liqueur and set it aside to cool completely. (For hot climates plunge it into a small ice bath or else it would take forever!)
- Break the Savoiardi into small chunks and divide them into four ramekins or four small martini glasses. Pour the coffee mixture over them, making sure that all the liquid is absorbed into the biscuits to form a soft base.
- In a small bowl whisk the egg whites until you get soft peaks and set these to one side. In a medium bowl tip in the mascarpone and add the honey. Using the same whisk that you used to beat the egg whites, mix the mascarpone and honey together. Then add the vermouth or Marsala slowly.
- Now fold the egg whites into the mascarpone mixture one third at a time, and spoon this over all four of the ramekins/servings. Place in the fridge for up to 24 hours. When ready to serve sprinkle over the cocoa powder.
Yum yum. Thank you Nigella!