OH MY GOD LETTER T. FINALLY. THIS IS THE MOST EXCITING POST EVER. Do you want to know wwwwhhhhhyyy?????
Tiramisu Cupcakes. BAM.
These cupcakes are fantastic. Really. REALLY. I mean, for someone like myself who is not even that crazy about tiramisu usually, those are some pretty strong words of praise. This dessert is incredibly flavorful, so-o-o rich, not too sweet but not at all under-sweetened (that’s not really a word is it?), and really pretty pretty if I do say so myself! Definitely a dessert you would make to impress. Because really, they would impress everyone. Now, they’re not as easy as from-the-box cupcakes or any of the standard flavors that I have already done, but they are without a doubt worth any and all of the work. Please make them. I’m 99% sure you won’t regret it. And if you do, you’re probably making them wrong. ;) Just kidding! Anyways, I now give you letter T: Tiramisu Cupcakes. Have fun!
Makes: 24 ladyfinger bases with enough filling for 18 Tiramisu cupcakes
Ladyfinger Cookie Bases
4 eggs, separated
2 tbsp + 2/3 C white sugar
1 C all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
Preheat oven to 400 F.
Line cupcake tins with 24 liners.
Place egg whites in a bowl and beat on high until soft peaks start to form.
Slowly add 2 tablespoons of the sugar and continue beating until stiff and glossy.
In another bowl, beat egg yolks and remaining sugar.
Whip until thick and very pale in color.
In a small bowl, whisk together flour and baking powder.
Fold half the egg whites into the egg yolk mixture.
Fold in flour, and then add the remaining egg whites.
Evenly divide the batter between the cupcake liners. The cupcake liners will not be filled to the top. (In fact, they shouldn’t even be filled more than a quarter to one-thirds full because they will rise quite a bit, and you’re going to need room for the marscapone filling part!)
Bake for 8 minutes. (Make sure they’re done all the way through. If you overbake them a touch/they seem a little dry, it shouldn’t be too big of a deal since you’re going to soak them with rum/coffee eventually anyways.)
Tiramisu (Marscapone Mix) Topping
6 egg yolks
3/4 cup white sugar
2/3 cup milk
1 pound mascarpone cheese
1 cup strong brewed coffee, room temperature
2 tablespoons rum
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder (actually, I use Ghirardelli Sweet Ground Chocolate and Cocoa, but it’s really whatever you prefer)
1 bar of dark, bittersweet, or semisweet chocolate (again, choose based on your preference. I like the bittersweet, but that’s just me. You won’t need too much chocolate since this is just for the chunks/curls as garnish, but, in my opinion, it is easier to form the curls when peeling them off of a thicker/larger bar)
1 1/4 cups heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Brew strong coffee. Set aside and let cool.
In a medium saucepan, whisk together egg yolks and sugar until well blended.
Whisk in milk and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture boils.
Boil gently for 1 minute, remove from heat, and allow to cool slightly.
Cover tightly and chill in refrigerator for at least 1 hour (I even let mine sit overnight sometimes).
Optional: In a medium bowl, beat heavy cream and vanilla until stiff peaks form. Set aside. (Only if you want whipped cream in addition to the marscapone topping)
Remove egg yoke, sugar, and milk mixture from refrigerator and whisk in mascarpone until smooth. (If it seems too runny to pipe without losing its form, continue beating it with a handheld mixer until it firms up. This can take a while, but just keep moving the mixer around and sort of whipping it, and it will eventually reach a smooth, thick, pipe-able consistency. I promise.) Set aside.
In a small bowl, combine coffee and rum.
Drizzle approximately 1 tbsp + 2 tsp of the coffee/rum mixture over each pre-baked ladyfinger. Add it a little at a time and wait for it to absorb into the ladyfingers before adding more. When it stops absorbing, stop adding more. (Make sure to drizzle slowly and evenly all over the ladyfinger cupcake. You really don’t get the same effect when you bite into the finished cupcake and one patch is super soggy and the center bit hasn’t gotten any of the coffee/rum mix!)
Pipe the mascarpone mixture over the soaked ladyfingers.
Optional: Pipe or spoon the whipped cream on top of the marscapone.
Dust cupcakes with cocoa powder.
Top with chocolate curls. Make the chocolate curls using a vegetable peeler on a piece of chocolate. It works best if the chocolate is slightly warm, but not melty.
Cover and refrigerate 4 to 6 hours, until set.
These may be the best cupcakes that I’ve made yet. They’re neck and neck with the carrot, fudge, and/or lemon cupcakes, although I guess it really just depends on what you’re in the mood for. That being said, I haven’t met anyone who has not been in the mood for Tiramisu cupcakes. They’re just so delicious, and they’re also so unique. They’re not your standard cupcake. No, these are showy, high quality creations, and they truly have a deep, rich flavor that makes them really classy cupcakes. Honestly. Still, before I go on and on about how they’re the best thing to ever come out of my oven or anything, I feel like I should add all of the notes I came up with, descriptions, and disclaimers just so you’re adequately prepared for what it takes to make these treats. They’re no walk in the park, but I feel like if you really read the following tips and try you’re hardest (ha, doesn’t that sound cheesy), you can definitely make them, no problem.
Firstly, I would suggest setting aside two days to make these cupcakes. The first day is reserved for brewing the coffee, making the ladyfinger cookies, and cooking the eggs, sugar, and milk for the base of the marscapone topping. On the second day, I would mix in the marscapone to get the topping, combine the coffee and rum, and assemble the cupcakes (completely), then let them chill for a few hours. I tried to add little notes next to the ingredients/along with the instructions to smooth over any potential issues that might pop up, but the most helpful thing I would say would be to get that, the planning/order of things, down (I mean understanding when to make what, what needs to be done ahead of time, etc.) Basically: Bake the Ladyfingers, let the ladyfingers cool, brew the coffee, make the egg custard base stuff, chill the egg custard base stuff, make the whipped cream (optional), mix the marscapone into the egg custard base stuff, mix together the coffee and rum, soak the ladyfingers with the coffee and rum, top the ladyfingers with the marscapone mix, top the marscapone mix with the whipped cream (optional), dust with cocoa powder, make the chocolate curls over top of the cupcakes by slicing the chocolate with a vegetable peeler, and chill. And do it in that order.
Other than that, I guess there are just little helpful hints that I’ll add here because they must not have easily fit next to the ingredients or instructions. Firstly, when you’re making the ladyfingers, make sure to beat the egg yokes in a large bowl because this will be the bowl that, eventually, everything is incorporated into. I know many of you will want to use a stand mixer for the egg whites because then you can let that do it’s thing while you work on the rest of the batter, and that’s totally fine, just plan for the end results, which call for all of the batter to end up in the YOKES’ bowl. Next, don’t overfill the cupcake liners when you’re spooning in the ladyfinger cookie batter. I know it looks tempting, I mean there’s no way they’re going to rise THAT much, right? Wrong. They rise quite a bit, and even if they don’t, it’s not like you want the cookie to end up the same height as regular cupcakes. I suggest putting in a scoopful of batter that is just enough to spread to the sides and cover the bottom because, once they’re done baking and rising, you’re going to want a good bit of empty space within the cupcake liners so you can fill it with the marscapone topping. Next, and this isn’t really a hint so much as something I wanted to mention, but make sure to brew STRONG coffee. I think it’s important that the rum and coffee is noticeable, definitely not in your face or overpowering, but strong enough to give it that rich, authentic flavor. And you’re not going to get that by using weak/regular coffee. Also, when you’re separating the eggs to get the yokes for the egg custard base stuff (I know I’ve been using that description a lot, and it’s really super untechnical, but I don’t know how else to characterize it. Just go with it.), don’t throw out the whites. They’re the super healthy part of the egg actually, and they’re great for healthy protein pancakes (I eat these like every morning. I know this is a cupcake blog, but I kind of really want to share the recipe because they’re awesome… thoughts?), soufflés, swiss buttercream frostings, and so much more. I mean, waste not, want not! Anyways, going along with making the egg/sugar/milk stuff, I know the recipe says the cover tightly when you chill it, but I just put the saucepan’s lid on top and stick it in the fridge like that. When I take it out, it’s not always super smooth (it almost looks like it has some dimpling maybe?) and there might be a bit of condensation, but once you mix in the marscapone, it all goes away, smooths, out, and fixes itself. Another note, I find it easier to just plop the marscapone straight into the saucepan with the egg custard base stuff and mix it in there, therefore it’s better if I use a medium to large saucepan. Now I know you’re probably thinking that I just told you that you have to fit the saucepan into your fridge, and you’re thinking that a large pot is never going to fit among all of the snackpacks, egg cartons, milk jugs, and other various containers taking up space in there. Hey, it’s just a suggestion. It’s totally fine to store the egg/sugar/milk stuff in a smaller container in the fridge while cooling and then to take it out and mix it with the marscapone in a separate, larger bowl. You have to do a few more dishes, but it’s all about tradeoffs, right? Anyways, I know I also mentioned it before in the instructions, but if you’re mixing in the marscapone, and it’s not looking thick enough to pipe/keep its form, don’t panic. Just keep using your handheld mixer, which is what I would use in the first place to mix in the marscapone, and beat the crap out of the stuff! Ha ha, only kidding, sort of. It can take a while (the first time I made the cupcakes it only took a few minutes of beating, but the second time took maybe ten minutes, if I remember correctly), but just keep the mixer on medium to high and move it around a lot. Eventually, everything will smooth out and thicken up, and you’ll be left with the perfect texture to pipe the filling onto the cupcakes (don’t worry, it won’t get fluffy or anything, it’ll be just right. Trust me.) Lastly, and this isn’t a hint really, but I need to add it somewhere, I really would like to point out how the whipped cream is completely optional. I point this out because by optional, I really mean unnecessary. The majority of the people with whom I’ve shared these cupcakes agree that they may even be better without the whipped cream! Therefore what I would do, if you’re especially partial to the whipped cream, is I would make it but leave it in a separate bowl. That way, those who chose to can spoon their own desired amount onto their cupcakes, but it’s not forced upon anyone. Win win! Or, if you’re like me, and you just don’t want to get another special ingredient, you don’t want to put in the effort to make any part that’s not completely necessary, and you don’t want to do the extra dishes, just leave it off. The cupcakes will still be delicious, and they won’t be lacking anything. I promise. Plus, no one will ever even know (I mean, I’m certainly not going to tell anyone)! Ok, wow, I think that’s it! That ended up being much longer that I had thought it would be…
Well, if you guys are still with me, I thank you for reading that whole thing! If not, and you’ve just skipped to the end, well, you’re missing out. Don’t come crying to me if you’re cupcakes don’t work out! Kidding… I hope that wasn’t mean or discouraging. Anyways, I hope you all try this recipe. The cupcakes are really incredible, they’re a huge hit with everyone and in any setting, they’re gorgeous, and I think they taste pretty awesome. While they may take two days, they’re really worth it. Please let me know how your baking experience goes if you get a chance to make these Tiramisu cupcakes, and don’t hesitate to ask in the comments if you have any questions! I wish you all the best of luck with the cupcakes, and have a great day!
Until next time,