Updated 29 January, 2009
Originally published 14 January, 2007
This is the dessert that capped our Foodbuzz 24, 24, 24 meal.
I got this recipe from my good friend, Elizabeth, with whom I've been swapping recipes for a long time. She told me about a green tea tiramisu recipe that she was trying. I was so intrigued by the idea of "Asianifying" tiramisu that I had to try it myself.
I've since made green tea tiramisu a few times, and Nate has even taken a video of me making it. Nate has been requesting this dessert as his birthday cake ever since the first time I made it. Yes, that's how much he loves it.
It's So Easy!
Making green tea tiramisu couldn't be easier. I don't know where people get the idea that making tiramisu is a lot of work. It's not hard at all and yet the taste is so satisfying.
When you make it a green tea tiramisu (or green tea-ramisu, as Nate calls it), it's not that much more complicated than regular tiramisu. Granted, if you do it my way, it does take a bit more work to look so pretty. But trust me, even with the extra work, it's not any harder than baking a cake. And in this case, you don't even have to bake!
Use Fresh Matcha (Green Tea Powder)
From having made a few of these, I can tell you that the matcha that you buy does affect the color of your tiramisu. If it's very fresh, the matcha will turn your mascarpone mixture a bright green but if you let the matcha get too old, it'll start to lose the intensity of color and also the flavor. The one I made this last time used up the last of my matcha and the color was much lighter.
I did notice that the caffeine jolt though was lighter too compared to the first time I made it. The first time I made the green tea tiramisu, I got so wired after just sampling some of the mascarpone mix while making it. This time around, it didn't have the same effect. Go figure!
A Few More Green Tea Tiramisu-Making Tips
As for the making of green tea tiramisu, you really just need to get yourself some ladyfingers from the store. I've found that Trader Joe's carries them cheapest of all (but I also found out that they are now making it a seasonal thing so I was very fortunate to find them when I went a few weeks ago).
If you want, you could make a sponge cake to go with it but like I said, this is an easy recipe and you'd be spoiling that by having to BAKE!
The next thing you need to do is brew some very strong green tea (not too much), just about a cup's worth. Let that cool.
For the mascarpone portion of the recipe, I like to whip my egg yolks in a bowl over simmering water to cook the eggs a little. This is probably the hardest part as the egg yolks are really thick and gooey when you first get started on the whipping. (Of course if you don't care about heating your eggs up, then the work of whipping the yolks with sugar could be done on your electric mixer and then it would be no problem at all.)
Once the egg yolks are whipped to double its volume and pale in color, the rest of it is a breeze. Mix all other ingredients in and then on to assembly.
Now, if you're keeping it really simple, it's all a matter of layering. Soak ladyfingers, lay on bottom of pan, add a layer of mascarpone mixture, repeat. End with mascarpone mixture. Just before serving, dust on some matcha.
Alright, not quite the end. If you want to do the picket fences like what I did, first, you'd have to have a springform pan. Then you need to measure your ladyfingers against the side of the pan and cut the end off one side so that the ladyfinger will stand up just skimming the top of the pan. Cut enough ladyfingers to line them all up around the pan (flat side facing inward). Then do as the above instructions. Not that much more difficult right?
Green Tea Tiramisu
1-1 1/2 cups brewed green tea, cooled
ladyfingers or plain sponge cake (I ended up using a bit more than 2 boxes of ladyfingers, but that was because I doubled the recipe to do the picket fence)
Green Tea Mascarpone Mixture
3 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
250g mascarpone cheese
1 cup heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract, or any orange-flavoured liqueur (such as Grand Marnier)
2 tsp matcha (green tea powder)
1. Beat the egg yolks and sugar in a stainless steel bowl set over a pot of simmering water, until the mixture is pale yellow and has doubled in volume. Cool the mixture in an ice water bath.
2. In a mixer, beat the mascarpone cheese until smooth & creamy. Don't overbeat it or it will get clumpy (though if that happens, it's not the end, you can still smooth it out at the end with the cream).
3. Add the matcha powder in small amounts at a time, adjusting according to your taste. If you prefer a stronger matcha taste, feel free to add another teaspoon of matcha powder. Mix to blend well.
4. Fold the mascarpone cheese into the slightly cooled egg yolk mixture above.
5. In a separate bowl, whip the heavy cream to soft peaks. Add vanilla or orange liqueur, if using.
6. Fold the mascarpone mixture above into the whipped cream until well blended.
7. Dip each ladyfinger into the brewed green tea (don't let them sit in the tea too long or you'll get super soggy ladyfingers but give it a second or two so they do get a little soft). I use a pie plate so that it's easier to place the ladyfinger in the tea. I just roll the ladyfingers over to get them soaked then remove them and layer them on the bottom of a rectangular glass dish, pyrex dish or springform pan.
8. Spread the mascarpone cream mixture on top, and repeat layers until finished (for me, that is three ladyfinger layers and three mascarpone layers). The top layer should be the mascarpone cream layer.
9. Refrigerate for at least a couple of hours or preferably overnight to let it set well. I find that overnight is best.
10. Dust with matcha just before serving.
Green Tea Tiramisu
Green Tea Tiramisu: A Little Slice of Heaven
Here's the video Nate made of the Green Tea Tiramisu production process:
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