I love to spend time with my friends, I also love to cook. What I am about to tell you may seem crazy to some but not to me. I receive so such joy by sharing my love of food and cooking with those that I love. Do not get me wrong, I still enjoy going out to dinner a lot, however, there are delicious recipes I have made that I have never seen in a restaurant such as berry tiramisu.
On New Year's Eve I wanted to make a special meal for some dear friends. While my menu may seem complicated I can assure you it was all easy to make. In fact, I was seeing patients the morning of New Year's Eve. Here was my menu:
I served the appetizers one at a time. While I was able to make the deviled eggs earlier, the scallops and shrimp had to be made at that time. No worries, these cook quickly plus it not only gave me the opportunity to have my girlfriends help me in the kitchen, but we were able to catch up on things that the men just were not interested in.
The dinner was a success. While I enjoyed every dish, by far my favorite was the berry tiramisu dessert. This dessert is light and so incredibly tasty with all those fresh berries. For those that dislike the traditional tiramisu with coffee and cocoa, this is the perfect alternative. The best news about this recipe is that it can easily be made gluten-free by substituting gluten-free ladyfingers. Shhh, I made mine gluten-free and no one could tell the difference.
(1) 12 ounce package of unsweetened frozen berries
(1) 12 ounce package or container of frozen raspberries in syrup, thawed
1/3 cup of raspberry liquor (inexpensive one is fine)
12 tablespoons sugar
3 packages of ladyfingers or 2 packages of Schar gluten-free ladyfingers (sold in grocery stores)
(2) 8 ounce containers of mascarpone Italian cheese (typically sold in the specialty cheese section)
1 cup of chilled whipping cream
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract, divided
1 cup thinly sliced strawberries, divided
(2) 6 ounce packages of raspberries, divided
(1) 1/2 pint of blueberries, divided
Using a heavy saucepan, cook the frozen mixed berries and 6 tablespoons of sugar over medium heat. Stir frequently until the mixture is reduced and matches the consistency of jam. This should take approximately 15 minutes. Cool mixture.
While the mixed fruit is cooking, take the thawed raspberries and drain into a small bowl. Use a spoon to press on the raspberries to get all the juice. Throw away the raspberry solids. Add 1/3 cup of raspberry liquor to the raspberry liquid and stir.
Using a sharp knife (I used a serrated one) cut a ladyfinger to the length 3 inches. Quickly dip the cut ladyfinger into the syrup and place the flat side against the springform side, rounded side facing up. Repeat this procedure until the side is all covered. Now dip the ladyfingers and cover the entire bottom. You may need to trim some in order to fit. Set aside.
While the be berry mixture is cooling, add the mascarpone cheese, 4 tablespoons of sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract into a large bowl. Using an electric mixer, whisk the mixture until it is blended and creamy. Set aside.
In another bowl, whisk the chilled whipping cream, 2 tablespoons of sugar, and one teaspoon of vanilla extract. Begin whisking on low until the cream begins to take some form then increase the speed to high. Once stiff peaks are formed (when raise the whisk, a peak will form and hold its shape) stop whisking. Check frequently, you don't want to make butter by whisking too much. Fold the whipped cream mixture into the mascarpone cheese.
To assemble, spread half the jam mixture over the bottom layer of the ladyfingers. Now spoon half of the cheese mixture over the top and gently spread it making sure to cover all the areas. Sprinkle half of the blueberries, raspberries, and 1/2 cup of the strawberries all over the top, . Put the rest of the fruit in the refrigerator.
Dip the ladyfingers in the syrup mixture and layer over the fruit. Again, you may need to trim some ladyfingers to fit. Spread the remaining jam over the ladyfingers. Spoon the remaining cheese mixture over the jam and spread to completely cover. Cover the springform pan and place in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours. I like having it sit overnight before serving so that all the flavors have a longer time to blend.
When ready to serve, using a plastic knife, carefully go around the springform pan side so that it will not stick when releasing the pan. Release the pan and decorate the top of the cake with the remaining fruit. Now you are ready to serve and enjoy this delicious variation of tiramisu.
If you would like me to share any of the recipes in my New Year's Eve menu please comment on which one you would like and I am happy to do that. If you want to see some other of my dessert recipes or a listing of all my recipes please click on the links below.
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