The February 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Aparna of My Diverse Kitchen and Deeba of Passionate About Baking. They chose Tiramisu as the challenge for the month. Their challenge recipe is based on recipes from The Washington Post, Cordon Bleu at Home and Baking Obsession.

RECIPE SOURCE:

Mascarpone Cheese – Vera’s Recipe (Baking Obsession) for Homemade Mascarpone Cheese.
Savoiardi/ Ladyfinger Biscuits – Recipe from Cordon Bleu At Home
Tiramisu – Carminantonio’s Tiramisu from The Washington Post, July 11 2007

Thank you Aparna and Deeba for a wonderful challenge!

Berry & Almond Tiramisu

This month’s challenge was to make the Italian dessert tiramisu. In true Daring Bakers style, the entire tiramisu was to be made from scratch – this included baking our own ladyfingers and making our own mascarpone cheese and zabaglione (an egg custard). We were allowed to be creative with the tiramisu in terms of flavors, decorations, and how we served it, as long as it contained the mascarpone cheese and ladyfingers we made.

A classic tiramisu is made by alternating layers of espresso soaked ladyfinger biscuits and a cream made from mascarpone cheese and zabaglione. I went the nontraditional route and attempted to do a vegan version without any alcohol or coffee. As an alternative to the espresso, I soaked my ladyfinger biscuits in a mixed berry concentrate. For some extra flair I also added some almond butter and honey to my mascarpone layer. After assembling the tiramisu, I topped it off with a dusting of cinnamon and nutmeg and piled on a layer of almond slices for the finishing touch.

I’d like to pretend that my tiramisu came out perfect on the first try, but this was actually my second attempt. Let’s just say the first try will go down in cooking history as an “epic fail.” While the second version was still flawed, I am happy that I didn’t throw in the towel and abandon the challenge. Now, not only can I say that I made my first tiramisu, but that I also ate it! ;-)

Berry and Almond Tiramisu

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