Summer Tiramisu Instead of Traditional Birthday Cake!

For my husband’s birthday celebration last week, he requested tiramisu instead of a traditional birthday cake. He didn’t have in mind classic tiramisu, the Italian specialty assembled with coffee-flavored ladyfingers and mascarpone. No! He specifically was longing for a delectable summer version he had sampled recently in France.

In Paris last month, at a dinner hosted by our French friends, Brigitte and Guy Bizot, he had discovered Brigitte’s tiramisu d’été, a multi-layered creation prepared with ladyfingers dipped in kirsch and cane syrup (rather than espresso), kirsch-scented mascarpone cream, and juicy strawberries and raspberries. One bite, and he swooned over this glorious dessert that easily serves 10.

At home a few weeks later, I pulled out the French recipe my friend had shared with me, and converted the metric measures to ours. I replaced the “sirop du sucre de canne” with Lyle’s Golden (sugarcane) Syrup available in US markets. To my spouse’s delight, this American variation was as memorable as the Parisian original. It was a perfect finale to our lobster birthday dinner!


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Tiramisu d’été -- Summer Tiramisu

5 large eggs
3 /4 cup sugar
1 pound mascarpone
5 tbsp plus 4 tsp kirsch
3 tbsp Lyle’s Golden Syrup (See cooking tip)
16 to 20 soft ladyfingers, about 1 inch by 3 1/2 inches (16 to 20 ounces depending on size of your dish)
2 pints strawberries, halved
1 pint raspberries
Mint sprigs for garnish

Equipment needed: 1 large bowl or a trifle dish, preferably glass

1. Separate the eggs and put the yolks in one mixing bowl and the whites in another.

2. With an electric mixer on medium high speed, beat the yolks with the sugar until the mixture turns pale yellow, thickens, and doubles in volume, 4 to 5 minutes. Stop the machine and add the mascarpone and 4 teaspoons of the kirsch. Beat a minute more until mixture is well combined, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl if necessary.

3. With an electric mixer with clean beaters on medium high speed, beat the egg whites until firm, 3 to 4 minutes. Then fold them into the mascarpone mixture in three equal additions.

4. In a shallow bowl, whisk together the remaining 5 tablespoons of kirsch and the cane syrup until well blended.

5. To assemble the tiramisu, one at a time, quickly dip 5 or more of the lady fingers in the kirsch mixture, being careful not to let them become soggy. Arrange in a single layer in the bottom of the bowl. Spread a fouth (about 2 cups) of the mascarpone mixture over them. Scatter a fourth of the berries on top. Repeat 3 more times, ending with the mascarpone mixture on top. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate 4 to 5 hours or overnight until set. Place remaining berries in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate.

6. To serve, mound remaining berries in the center of the tiramisu and garnish with a few mint sprigs. Serves 10.

Cooking tip: Lyle’s Golden Syrup, is a popular British product made with cane sugar that is used in baking. It is available in some supermarkets such as Whole Foods. You can also find it online.

Copyright Betty Rosbottom 2018

2 thoughts on “Summer Tiramisu Instead of Traditional Birthday Cake!

  1. Can’t wait to try it! Thank you for continuing to share your creative kitchen capers! I’m sure Ron had a happy and delicious birthday! A la votre!

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