When we go to a new Italian place, my husband always orders lasagna for dinner and I always order the Tiramisu for dessert. It’s our way of testing the waters: if they can’t get those two things right, we don’t go back 🙂 My favorite Tiramisu (and my husband’s favorite lasagna) is at Patrenella’s on Jackson Hill. Great place. Fun service. Good, solid tiramisu. The ladyfingers are perfectly moist and the ladyfinger-to-mascarpone ratio is perfect.
My sister gave me Martha Stewart Cupcakes for Christmas and I nearly fainted as I flipped to the Tiramisu Cupcakes. Um, yes, please! I made 1/3 batch of cupcakes (6) and a half batch of frosting (I’m a liberal froster). As you can see, there was actually enough frosting for 7 cupcakes 🙂
My grocery store doesn’t carry sweet Marsala and I didn’t want to make a second stop at Spec’s. For such a small amount, I decided to use our port for the Coffee-Marsala syrup. It made a wonderful, boozy concoction. I definitely did not miss the Marsala. The cakes were moist, without being soggy. The frosting was rich and fluffy. Patrenella’s Tiramisu has been put on notice!
The classic Italian dessert made into individual cupcakes.
- For the cake
- 1 1/4 cups cake flour
- 3/4 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 vanilla bean pod, halved and seeds scraped
- 4 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 3 large eggs + 3 egg yolks, at room temp
- 1 cup sugar
- For the coffee-marsala syrup
- 3/8 cup espresso (or strongly brewed coffee)
- 1 oz sweet Marsala (I used port)
- 1/4 cup sugar
- For the frosting
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 8oz mascarpone
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- Unsweetened cocoa powder, for dusting
- Espresso beans, for garnish
- Preheat oven to 325. Line two muffin pans with paper liners (18 total). Use nonstick spray or butter to grease the tops of the muffin pan. Whisk flour, baking powder and salt together in a bowl and set aside. In a small microwave-safe bowl, add milk, butter, vanilla bean pod halves and seeds, and butter. Heat in 15 second intervals until butter is melted.
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, whisk the eggs, egg yolks, and sugar on high speed. (The cookbook instructs you to whisk the eggs by hand over a simmering pot of water for 6 minutes, until warm. I overlooked that step and didn't seem to have any problems with the finished product.) Whisk mixture until pale, fluffy and thick enough to hold a ribbon on the surface for several seconds when the whisk is lifted.
- Remove vanilla pods from the bowl of milk and discard. Switch to the paddle attachment (if using an electric mixture, just fold in the ingredients by hand with a rubber spatula). With the mixer set on low, add flour mixture and slowly add the milk mixture, mixing until just combined. Fill muffin tins 3/4 full. Bake 15-20 minutes, until lightly browned and a skewer comes out clean. Let sit in pan until just warm to the touch. Using a knife, poke 4-5 holes in each cupcake (you want to give the syrup a way to travel down the cupcake but you don't want to tear up the cupcake).
- To make the coffee-Marsala syrup: Mix coffee, sugar, and Marsala until the sugar has dissolved. Using a silicon pastry brush, brush the tops of the cupcakes, letting the first round soak in completely before making another pass. Repeat until all of the syrup has been used.
- Make the mascarpone frosting: With the whisk attachment, whip the cream on high until stiff peaks just form. Add the mascarpone, powdered sugar, and vanilla and whisk on medium-high for 1-2 minutes. Frost cupcakes when they have completely cooled. Garnish with a dusting of cocoa powdered and coffee beans.
Yields: 18 cupcakes
Estimated time: 45 minutes