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Who doesn't love the popular Italian dessert, gliding your fork into the creamy layers of ladyfingers dipped in coffee, layered with a whipped mixture of eggs, sugar, and Marsala wine. An effortless no-bake and make-ahead dessert; when using mascarpone cheese, you can challenge yourself by making your own or use store-bought. 
Prep Time40 mins
Refrigerator Time2 hrs
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: coffee, dessert, Italian, mascarpone
Servings: 8 people
Author: Chef Robin


  • 2 cups brewed espresso or very strong coffee, at room temperature
  • 1 cup dry Marsala wine, divided
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar, divided
  • 16 ounces mascarpone cheese, room temp
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 24 Savoiardi Italian ladyfingers (from 7-ounce package)
  • Bittersweet chocolate or cocoa powder for dusting


Prepare the coffee

  • Combine espresso or strong coffee with 1/2 cup Marsala wine, vanilla extract, and 2 tablespoons of sugar in a wide bowl.

Prepare the filling

  • Vigorously whisk egg yolks, 1/2 cup Marsala wine, and 6 tablespoons of sugar in a bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water until tripled in volume, 5 to 8 minutes. To make this step easier, use a handheld electric mixer at medium speed. Do not stop beating the mixture until removed from the heat. Remove the bowl from heat then fold in the softened mascarpone cheese until just combined. 
  • Whip cream in a bowl until it holds firm peaks. Gently fold in half of the whipped cream into the mascarpone mixture, then the remaining half just until fully incorporated.

To assemble

  • Dip half of the ladyfingers into the coffee, and line the bottom of a 10-inch dish. (It doesn't matter whether or not you use a rectangle dish or oval, though you might find that you need to break the ladyfingers into pieces to fit them in the dish.)
  • Spoon half of the mascarpone filling over the ladyfingers and spread into an even layer to the edges of the pan. Then dip the remaining ladyfingers very quickly into the remaining coffee and arrange a second layer over filling.
  • Spoon the rest of the mascarpone mixture over ladyfingers. Grate chocolate on top or dust with cocoa powder. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours.
  • When ready to serve, dust with more grated chocolate. Leave out at room temperature about 20 minutes before serving. Tiramisu should be chilled and consumed within 2 days after making, but no longer as the ladyfingers tend to break down and become mushy.