Speculoos Tiramisu

If I had known that tiramisu was this simple to make, I wouldn’t have waited this long to make it. I’v been tracking bloggers who have been making tiramisu ever since it became the darling dessert of most food bloggers. I missed the joining the tiramisu wave, although the web was buzzing with tiramisu recipes the whole of last year . Ranging from the detailed version I’v seen on purplefoodie to the gorgeous one on ediblegarden, its been tempting me time and again.

So when we did our groceries two weeks back, I randomly picked up a pack of mascarpone, convincing myself that I’d get down to it, if I saw the package sitting in the fridge to remind me. As it always happens, the package languished for two weeks and suddenly in a fit of inspiration, and finding myself some free time in the evening yesterday, I pulled it out and went through a few bookmarked recipes for inspiration. And then it struck me, why not make the speculoos version of it? I had a pack of speculoos biscuits sitting idle and have heard that biscuits can substitute the ladyfingers or savoiardi biscuits, that are typically used in tiramisu.

So then in a flurry of activity, and around 20 minutes later, this popped up on my counter:

So without much ado, here’s my version of cheat’s tiramisu. Purists may balk, but I went ahead and substituted speculoos biscuits instead of savoiardi, omitted the kahlua and Nay, did not may my mascarpone cheese from scratch. But it was ohhh so delicious, if I may say, the best tiramisu ever. And the hubby oohed and aahed, which is rare becasue hes not very fond of desserts (!!). He especially loved the slight bitterness of the coffee that contrasts the sweetness of the speculoos and the sweetened cheese.

Speculoos biscuits:

Speculoos Tiramisu
4 eggs at room temperature, yolks and and whites separated and collected in two separate bowls
4 teaspoons powdered demerara (brown) sugar, can be substituted with white
12 speculoos biscuits* (or use the real deal – ladyfinger biscuits if you have them)
350 gms Mascarpone cheese (go for the best quality you can buy, I used Galbani)
1/2 cup espresso, freshly brewed
2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa for dusting

Start by whisking the egg yolks together. Add the sugar and whisk till sugar blends in. Add the mascarpone cheese and combine till uniform consistency.
Then beat the egg whites till stiff peaks are formed (using a hand mixer with a whisk attachment).
Add the stiff whites to the yolk-cheese mixture and gently fold it in.
Keep aside.

Now start assembling. Take a biscuit, quickly dip it in the espresso, so that it is just soaked and then lay it on a plate. Do the same with 3 more, so that you have the base layer of 4 biscuits forming a rectangle. Top this with one more layer of soaked biscuits. Then spread the mascarpone mix in a layer over this base. Over this, repeat with one more layer of soaked biscuits. Top with one layer of mascarpone mix.
Using a strainer, dust the cocoa powder over the top layer.

Stand up and appreciate the work of art. Refrigerate for 3-4 hours, or best overnight. Make the hubby taste it and he will forget about the semi-finals of the EPL that are being telecast live.

True story.

*Note: Speculoos biscuits are a Dutch / Belgian specialty and has a mild ginger and nutmeg flavour to it. It can be substituted with any other biscuit that is neutral in flavour and will not crumble easily when dunked in the espresso, so any tea-time biscuit would serve the purpose. But vary the sugar that you use in the cheese depending on the sweetness of the biscuit. Speculoos are relatively sweeter that most tea-times biscuits.

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