Week four of the Great British Bake Off and . . .
Well, they prepared us for the ‘flouncing’ but they didn’t prepare us for that, did they?
Initially I was just as annoyed as everyone else in the whole Twitter-sphere seemed to be (only I kept my thoughts between my own four walls), not because of what had happened as such, but more how it had happened. It was the principle of the thing. How could someone think it was okay to remove someone else’s ice cream from the freezer simply because they thought it shouldn’t be there?
However. I soon realised that it is easy to judge on what I had seen and what I had seen may not have been a truly accurate picture of what had happen. Which turned out to be the case. Also, can I just point out now that Iain’s ice cream was waaayyy too soft even before it went in the freezer. He didn’t churn it for long enough (especially given the heat) and therefore there was no way that it was going to set in time.
Being taken out of the freezer before it should have been may not have helped but ultimately it was wrong before it went in and Iain was the master of his own downfall. Not Diana.
As Sue Perkins said, this is a program about cakes.
Let’s move on.
To these little pots of loveliness!
In my family tiramisu is more informally known as Beelzebub’s dessert.
My mum, my sister and I adore it. My dad hates it. Truly hates it. Even more than he hates dusty meringue.
I would bathe in it if I could.
Well, maybe that it going a little far, but . . . you get the idea.
Needless to say that since becoming gluten-free, tiramisu was one of the (many) things I missed the most.
Strange then that I had never contemplated making a gluten-free version. Until now.
Whilst watching the bakers in the tent struggle to cut a wafer thin sponge in half to make Mary Berry’s tiramisu cake I had the idea that I could use the sponge from this swiss roll as the cake part. The rest is fairly straight forward.
There are actually three layers of sponge in these little pots but the bottom one disappeared in a cloud of mascarpone / ricotta / coffee / marsala mix. But don’t worry, it didn’t suffer. And it is a nice little surprise towards the bottom.
If you want to make one big tiramisu rather than 6 little ones, go ahead. Then you’ll be able to stick your whole face in it.
If I could get away with eating all 6 of these myself, then I would.
For the sponge:
- 3 large eggs, separated
- 75g golden caster sugar
- 25g ground almonds
For the soaking liquid:
- 87ml hot water
- 2 1/4 tsp espresso powder
- 43ml marsala
For the cream filling:
- 1 large egg, separated
- 15ml marsala
- 37g golden caster sugar
- 125g mascarpone
- 125g ricotta
Cocoa powder to dust
- Start with the sponge – pre-heat the oven to 180 Celsius / 160 Fan / 350 Fahrenheit. Line a shallow baking sheet (13.5 inches x 9.5 inches approx.) with non-stick baking paper.
- In a medium bowl whisk the egg whites until they form stiff peaks. Set aside.
- In a separate bowl whisk the egg yolks and caster sugar together until the are pale and creamy. Fold in the ground almonds.
- Add the egg yolk mixture to the egg whites gradually, folding in well after each addition.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and spread it out as evenly as possible.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown and firm to the touch.
- Leave to cool completely in the tin.
- While the sponge is cooling, prepare the soaking liquid and cream filling – to make the soaking liquid, combine the water, espresso powder and marsala together in a small bowl.
- To make the cream filling – whisk the egg yolk and the caster sugar together until thick and a pale yellow. Add the marsala and mix. Then add the mascarpone and ricotta and mix until fully incorporated. Make sure there are no lumps of cheese, because that would be nasty.
- In a separate bowl whisk the egg white until it forms soft peaks and then fold into the mascarpone / ricotta mixture.
- To assemble – remove the sponge from the non-stick paper and cut out 3 discs for each pot (measure the pots you are using to determine how big they should be. If you need to you can always do a mix & match patch-up job for some of the layers if you can’t get as many complete circles out of the sponge as you need).
- Place a small amount of the cream filling in the bottom of each pot followed by a disc of sponge.
- Using a pastry brush (or a small spoon) apply some of the soaking liquid to the sponge. Make sure it is completely saturated. Don’t be scared.
- Add another layer of cream followed by another layer of sponge and more soaking liquid.
- Repeat the last step again and then top each pot off with a final layer of cream.
- Place in the fridge for at least a couple of hours (ideally overnight) and dust with cocoa powder before serving.
- Keep refrigerated and can be made the day before.
NB: this tiramisu contains raw egg so please don’t feed it to pregnant ladies, the elderly, people who are already a little under the weather or anyone else with a compromised immune system. No matter how much they beg you.
© The Pink Rose Bakery 2014
Recipe adapted from Nigella Lawson’s Irish Cream Tiramisu in Nigella Express.