Italian cooking is my favourite type of food, pizza and pasta, but tiramisu is not something that normally sends me salivating over the dessert menu. However as part of my easy Italian cooking, I did get very attracted to Gino D'Acampo's take on the traditional Tiramisu. With coffee out, cherries and amaretto in, this sounded like one very appetising finale for any meal.
While cooking up this surprisingly simple recipe, the smell of the simmering cherries certainly got my hunger up. And after diving in, the mascarpone was so tasty that I'm sure even Gino himself would proclaim it as, 'Fantastico!' It's a perfect dinner party recipe, being a sure-fire crowd pleaser and something you can put together in advance. To whip one up yourself, check out the full recipe below, along with the Gino D'Acampo side-by-side comparison.
400g Cherries, pitted and halved
50g Caster Sugar
4 tablespoons Cherry or Amaretto Liqueur
8 small Madeleine Cakes or sponge finger biscuits
2 tablespoons chopped toasted nuts
For the mascarpone cream
2 egg yolks
2 tablespoons caster sugar
250g mascarpone cheese
2 tablespoons cherry or Amaretto liqueur
Hand whisks and an electric whisk.
Please make sure that there are 4 (clear glass) whiskey glasses for serving.
Heat the cherries, sugar and 2 tablespoons of the liqueur in a saucepan until the sugar has dissolved and the cherries are slightly softened and their skin starts to burst. Set aside to cool.
For the mascarpone cream, whisk the egg yolks and sugar in a bowl until pale. Beat in the mascarpone and 2 tablespoons of the liqueur.
Place a layer of cake in the bottom of 4 individual glasses. Spoon over a little of the remaining liqueur, then add a layer of the cooked cherries and their juices. Top with a layer of the mascarpone cream. Repeat the layering until you are nearly at the top of the glass, finishing with the cream.
Sprinkle the top with chopped nuts and chill for 2 hours before serving.