The dish's pudding-like texture is very similar to an English trifle (the
tiramisu is actually a variation of the trifle). If you want a firmer, more cake-like
dish that can be sliced, lower the amount of cream to 2 cups and only drizzle the
ladyfingers lightly with espresso.
You need a food processor to make this recipe. It won't turn out if you use
1 (17 ounce) container mascarpone cheese
3 cups heavy cream
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
5 tablespoons rum
1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
2 cups espresso coffee
30 ladyfinger biscuits (or more if necessary)
3 ounces or so bittersweet chocolate, for shavings
Using a food processor fitted with a steel blade, pulse the mascarpone two or
three times. Add the cream in dabs, pulsing once or twice after each bit.
Do the same with the vanilla extract and rum.
Add confectioners' sugar, being careful not
to overmix (which will make the mixture grainy and less attractive, although it
won't affect taste). The result should be fairly soupy, but thick enough that
a spoon leaves a track when you stir the mixture.
Dip ladyfingers into coffee and lay on the bottom of a 2-quart dessert dish (it
is helpful to plan the arrangement of the ladyfingers before you start dipping them
- so you can be sure they'll fit your dish).
Top with a layer of mascarpone mix.
Repeat, until you have three layers of ladyfingers topped with three layers of
Top the last mascarpone layer with chocolate shavings, cut from the
block with a vegetable peeler.
Serve on a plate, or in a bowl, sprinkled with more chocolate.