Fifteen Spatulas


a square piece of Authentic Italian tiramisu with mascarpone, egg, espresso, and ladyfingers

Two days after moving from Georgia to Connecticut, Pete and I flew off to Italy (my dad jokes that we dropped off our bags and left…and looking at the stacks of unpacked boxes still in the house, yes, this is true). Today I want to tell you all about the trip and share my favorite Italian food ever…tiramisu!

a cup of authentic italian tiramisu with cocoa powder, espresso, mascarpone, and ladyfingers

On the plane from the US to Europe, I thought about this very post. I was sure I was going to write a long post raving about Italy and all the amazing food. That’s exactly what I did when I went to Paris a year and a half ago. But Italy really surprised me.

To be perfectly honest, in general I was underwhelmed by the food. Pete and I ate at a variety of restaurants, from jam-packed hole-in-the-wall eateries where people didn’t speak a word of English and the menus were scribbled on a piece of paper taped to the wall, to ones recommended by Fodor’s and Rick Steves, to top rated restaurants on Trip Advisor. One place even had a NY times newspaper clipping tacked on the door, saying they are the best trattoria in Rome. But for some reason the food just didn’t jive with me or my husband.

And since the trip, Pete and I have been trying to figure out why. It’s certainly not a matter of the ingredients. As I showed in my video, the ingredients are just incredible. Dare I say they might even be the best in the world in terms of freshness and quality. But it was the preparation that we thought was lacking.

The biggest and most recurring issue was the inconsistency of the food. I would get a side of potatoes where one piece of potato would be brown and crispy and the one next to it would be mushy, colorless, and greasy. The same thing happened with a bowl of tortellini I had, where some of the tortellini were twice as big as the others in the same bowl, which meant that some were chewy and hard, while some were overcooked and mushy.

The expensive restaurant food was also generally too simple and too “homey.” Sometimes I love a bowl of cheesy pasta with creamy sauce, but this kind of food generally doesn’t excite me. You know how sometimes you want something creamy and fatty, but then later you want something fresh, light, vibrant, and balanced? The food I had was generally very caloric, dripping with olive oil, and not really light or balanced. Also in Italy, the pasta is often just noodles with sauce. I know when I make pasta at home I always have to have at least 3 ingredients mixed in (you know, a protein, a veggie, herbs, etc). The fresh pasta was delicious, and undoubtedly the best I’ve ever had, but pasta only with sauce? Something about that I just don’t like.

Now, did I have some awesome meals in Italy too? Of course! But I noticed that my favorite meals were the ones that were typically assortments of cheeses and charcuterie, and sandwiches prepared with the freshest tomatoes, arugula, high quality salami, and roasted eggplants with their amazingly fruity olive oil.

And the gelato…oh the gelato. So good.

To sum up my thoughts about the food, I think much of the problem is that I expected the food to be somewhat similar to Paris, because people always say “France and Italy have amazing food.” For that reason it’s easy to group them together, but their takes on food are wildly different. Overall, I have to say that I think the food in France is better than in Italy (sorry, I still love you Italy, but seriously, looking at those Paris photos). I was in Paris a year and a half ago and I STILL remember so many of those meals, which I think says a lot. So anyway, those are my general thoughts on the Italian food. The Italian sightseeing? INCREDIBLE!

The duomo in Florence:

One of the piazzas in Florence:

St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican:

And the incredible Roman forum. This was a booming Roman civilization long ago…now it’s just ruins.

Alright, I know you’re hungry so let’s talk about this tiramisu. Several months ago I ate tiramisu at an Italian place in Brooklyn called Va Beh, and since then I have been obsessed with tiramisu. My husband literally had to beg me to stop ordering tiramisu after day 3 in Italy, because I wanted to eat it all. the. time.

With all that’s been said in this post so far, it should be no surprise that the quality of the tiramisu is dependent on the quality of the ingredients. Make sure to use fresh espresso here. That instant espresso powder just isn’t going to cut it.

Start by whipping egg whites to stiff peaks:

what stiff egg whites look like for folding into tiramisu

Then whipping egg yolks until pale and frothy:

Whipped egg yolks make authentic Italian tiramisu mascarpone cream light and airy

Add some creamy Italian mascarpone cheese, and whip it in.

a big scoop of mascarpone cheese for tiramisu cream

Dip ladyfinger cookies into freshly brewed espresso:

an Italian ladyfinger dipped in espresso for tiramisu

And arrange them in the bottom of a glass dish. Cover the ladyfingers with the eggy mascarpone mixture:

pouring a layer of mascarpone cream on espresso soaked ladyfingers for tiramisu

And repeat the process with another layer. Then dust the top with cocoa powder:

dusting tiramisu with cocoa powder

Then comes the hard part…letting the tiramisu sit in the fridge for a good 4-6 hours. This lets the layers soak into each other and lets the flavor meld. Then you can cut it into squares and dig in.

Here’s a video I made for you that shows how to make this recipe from start to finish:

Tiramisu Recipe

Yield: 6 servings

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 0 minutes

Total Time: 6 hours


3 egg whites*
6 egg yolks*
8 oz mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
2 tbsp amaretto liqueur
3+3 tbsp sugar
1 cup freshly pulled espresso, cooled to room temperature
3-4 dozen ladyfingers, storebought or homemade
cocoa powder, for dusting


In a super clean bowl, whip the egg whites and 3 tbsp of sugar together with a hand mixer, for about 3-5 minutes until the egg whites hold stiff peaks (see photo above). In a separate bowl, whip the egg yolks with the other 3 tbsp sugar for 3-5 minutes until the egg yolks are thick, frothy, and pale yellow in color. Add the mascarpone and amaretto liqueur to the egg yolks and whip until combined. Gently fold the stiff egg whites into the egg yolk mixture and set aside.

Gather up a 8x6 glass container (or you can do individual servings in glasses), and dunk each ladyfinger into the espresso for 2-5 seconds and place the ladyfinger into the bottom of the glass dish. Don't let the ladyfinger soak so much that it falls apart, just a quick dunk to let it absorb a little bit of espresso. Once the ladyfingers have formed a single layer in the bottom of the dish, spread 1/2 of the mascarpone mixture over the ladyfingers. Arrange another layer of espresso soaked ladyfingers on top, and spread over the remaining mascarpone cream.

Wrap the top of the glass container with plastic wrap and let the tiramisu refrigerate for 4-6 hours. This part is important, it allows the layers to soak into each other and the flavors to meld together. Serve cold.

*This recipe contains raw eggs. There is a very small risk of salmonella when consuming raw eggs. Consume at your own risk.

76 comments on “Tiramisu

  1. Hi,

    I love reading your blog and today the name Tiramisu reminded me of my uncle making this and when ever i visit him, i ask him to make this for me. I always wanted to try this but we dont have mascorpaone cheese easily available here. is there a substitute for this? I would really love to try this.

  2. Your tiramisu looks amazing, that is one of my favorites also.
    Italy is wonderful, it has too many places to visits, so we have to be prepare to spend a los of time ther.

  3. Joanne, I have made tiramisu a couple times but this actually sounds better and easier than my previous attempts. I also enjoyed looking at your pictures from Italy!

  4. Welcome to CT. It’s a beautiful state. Will you be writing a blog or two about food you eat at local restaurants?

    • Thanks Lia! I haven’t been too impressed with any of the restaurants in the area, so probably not. Where do you live and are there any restaurants you love? We will venture out to other parts of CT soon.

      • We live about 30 minutes north in a town called Plainfield. There is unfortunately not much to offer in northeastern CT although The Vanilla Bean in Pomfret and 85 Main in Putnam are really good. You should check them out. TVB would be a great warm weather trip as rt 169 is a beautiful drive and you can eat outside. Happy eating.

        • You are so close to Rhode Island. Providence has some of the best restaurants around! Take a ride up for Water Fire over the summer and enjoy dinner in down town.

      • Joanne, what part of CT did you move to? I travel there frequently on business. I am not a big fan of winter, I moved south 3 years ago and never want to live any where that I can’t wear flip-flops year round :) I will admit tho it’s hard to find good pizza!

  5. alternative: We always put the liquor in the coffee mixture…and use a bit more of it with a combo of kahlua, brandy and/or rum. Yes, potent. And delicious! Thanks for the great pictures and the great recipe!

  6. Nothing like a cross country move and then intl travel! Glad you have no grass growing under your feet and thanks for the amazing images and gorgeous tiramisu!

  7. We currently live in Italy. We’ve been underwhelmed by the food often too but sometimes it’s really great. Now gelato and tiramisu is always good. My husband learned to make it from a local. So good. Better than what you can get at most restaurants. I’ve found that going to their houses to eat what they make and learn from them is way better than dining out. Rome tends to be too…touristy? Trendy? Something. Some of the agriturismos in Tuscany and northern Italy? Now that’s good food.

    • You know, I think you’re on to something. I didn’t enjoy the restaurant food much when I lived in Spain but my hostmom cooked the most AMAZING food and to date is one of my biggest cooking inspirations. I definitely could see it being the same way for Italy.

  8. Oh, the tiramisu looks heavenly — and I have a hard time not ordering it constantly, too! I’ll confess to also being underwhelmed by the food while in Italy. We visited Rome, Florence, Venice and Lake Garda — and I was hungry most of the time. Hungry — in Italy. It just . . . it doesn’t even make sense. Can’t believe I’m typing it.

    But the facts remain: the food we had wasn’t in “American”-style (read: large) portions, and the pizza was often greasy and lacking in deliciousness. It’s hard to even put my finger on it, but I remember coming home and wanting to sink straight into a cheeseburger at home in D.C. And I don’t even eat cheeseburgers! (That often, anyway.) But the gelato? The pistachio gelato was killer. So awesome. I dream about it.

    • That’s one of the biggest adjustments Americans typically have to make: portion size. Italians (Europeans in general) don’t eat nearly as much, at a single serving, as Americans do. I see that you visited Lago Di Garda! What towns did you visit?

    • Hey Meg, Good to know I’m not the only one with this impression. There are some interesting comments below about the food in Italy…I wonder what the food is like outside the major cities!

  9. Hi! It’s always interesting to see other Americans take on Italy, and this one gave me and my wife a few things to chew over. We’ve lived here for the past couple of years and I think I can answer why your food experience was less than pleasant: you ate in the tourist traps! It’s hard to reconcile that with Paris, as Paris is also a huge tourist trap, but yet everywhere you turn is a great place to eat. Major Italian cities pretty much cater to tourists and the food is rather subpar, as you found out. For authentic Italian cuisine, you need to travel at least 30 mins outside the cities. It’s rather astonishing the difference in quality between a small trattoria, or agriturismo, in a little town outside a city, and a “well reviewed” place inside the city proper. I hope you get a chance to visit again and write the post you originally intended. :)

    • Hi Mike, I really appreciate your comment, I feel like you’ve given me an answer to the mystery that’s been in my head, because my husband and I just didn’t understand what was going on! haha. One day I will return and I will follow your advice, and hopefully we can go out to the smaller towns.

  10. Hi, wonderful website!
    However I think you were misguided by well-known restaurants instead of real italian food. Although I find their pastas a bit too blend (they don’t use much salt, if any, unlike us portuguese people), they eat pasta as a part of their meal and not as a main course. Their normal meal will include an antipasto, a pasta/risotto/gnocchi dish, a meat/fish with sides dish (main course) and then desert. They’ll sometimes serve their salad after the meat/fish dish and serve this one with plain rice/potatoes.
    Did you try any main courses? For example, I just love “pollo sotto accetto” as a main dish. There is also “parmigiana” which is an eggplant based main dish. As for their “primo piatto” most risottos are amazing. As for the pasta, did you try the spaghetti al aglio e olio? There isn’t much in it (just olive oil and garlic) but it’s really, really good.
    All in all I’m sorry Italy disappointed you :/

    • Hi Sofia, thanks for your comment! Well, I wouldn’t go as far as saying Italy disappointed me, because I still loved it and ate great things. But I guess it wasn’t what I expected (definitely had high expectations). There are some other interesting comments here and it sounds like the better food is had in the smaller towns.

      • Maybe that’s some of it too :) I lived in Torino, which is less popular than Rome and Firenze, and most of the time I ate at the places for students or places my friends would take me, so they were not-so-turisty places.
        I meant disappointed as the food disappointed you. I’m sure Italy (the country) can’t disappoint. It’s beautiful! :)

  11. An oldie but goodie…it looks fabulous…Next time in New York…it’s dinner at my home….

  12. I am going to echo what Mike has said. When we go back to visit family in Italy, we usually stay a couple of days in Rome or elsewhere before going to stay with them and have disappointing meals at the tourist traps. But once we are with them, we eat like kings whether we eat in or out because they know all the wonderful places to go and they are never in a main centre. We usually have to travel half and hour or more away from the tourist areas and then find marvelloous food experiences. It is very tricky for tourists to eat well in Italy unfortunately.

    • Hey Suzanne, really good to hear your thoughts. As I mentioned with Mike, this helps solve the mystery a bit. Next time we are in Italy we will venture out into the small towns.

  13. Whatever your food experiences in Italy, this tiramisu looks amazing. It’s such a classic and wonderful dessert.

  14. It has been so many years since I have been in Italy. I look forward to going back soon! I love Tiramisu and made some a couple of weeks ago!

  15. I loved the food in Italy more than Paris. I loved how fresh, simple and delicious everything was. The tomatoes were to die for. I have to say your tiramisu looks perfect. I’ll have to try your recipe. I’d love a bite right now. I’m starving!

  16. Mike and I talked about this after I posted and we pinpointed that all the good food we had in the Florence area was actually in Pontassieve which was a 30 minute train ride away. Maybe try staying at a B&B outside Florence or Rome and ride the train in to town. Train is super cheap and the B&B folks generally know some good places to eat. We couldn’t think of a single place within Florence or Rome where the food was impressive and it was generally overpriced.

  17. Hi Joanne,
    So sorry that the food was underwhelming for you in Italy. My family is Italian so I found the food comforting and just like home! However, the BEST meals that we had in Italy (that we still talk about to this day) are from a few hole in the wall restaurants in my family’s hometown of Lucca (a small tuscan town). I definitely think that’s where you would get the food you were hoping for. Thanks for this recipe – I got Tiramisu at every restaurant in Italy and still can’t get enough. Can’t wait to try this one!

  18. Well if that isn’t the most gorgeous tiramisu I’ve ever seen….wow! Looks like the perfect texture. Bummer about the food in Italy (I’ve never been), but that gelato sure looks incredible! mmm

  19. I have been to Italy several times and have always liked the food, especially in Tuscany, where everything is very fresh. The small places seem to take pride in what they serve. The pizza is delicious, with more sauce than we put on it over here. And the wine they serve in the little places is Tuscany is wonderful, the kind with no sulfites, so no headache in the morning! I do agree with you about how good the plates of salumi are with the Tuscan bread. Yum, when we came back that was all I wanted to eat! And Cappucino! Nice tiramisu recipe, I will try it for christmas!

  20. I’ve never been to Florence, but I lived in Rome for three months and it was amazing! What my family and I found was that the best places to eat often weren’t the big, advertised ones; it was the local’s eateries. We were right by Campo De’Fiori and our possibly favorite place to eat was at a resturant right behind it, La Carbonara. There were other great places to eat as well, including La Quercia and this amazing place that I forget the name of, but it was a little restaruant right by the Forum that had amazing food (pumpkin hummus, green apple and ginger smoothies, among other things). Our favorite pizza place was Florida, which was on Torre Argentina, right by the cat sanctuary (which also happened to be the spot where Caesar was murdered). And then, of course, there was the gelato. I could go on and on. My personal favorite was a place called Gelateria de Teatro that had so many amazing and exotic flavors, like white peach and lavender, basil, chocolate orange, strawberry sage, and so many others. My favorite gelato flavor out of all the flavors I tried (which was a total number of around 70 flavors) was, incedentally, their tirimisu flavor there. It was ultra-decadent and had pieces of the cake swirled through the gelato. Our other favorite place for gelato was Giolitti, which is down the street from the Pantheon.
    And then there was the Roman coffee. I don’t like coffee, but I drank it every day in Rome. Tazza D’Oro (Cup of Gold) was by far my favorite, but my older sister and mom loved this local coffee bar called Cafffe Camerino (and yes, it’s supposed to have three f’s. In fact, it’s slogan was “el cafe con tre effe”) that had the best marrochinos, which was a shot of espresso with a dollop of rich chocolate in the bottom.

    I could go on and on….living in a place for three months can make you pretty knowledgable about the area, and let’s face it: I’m feeling Romesick. :) The food especially….I had to keep a daily journal as an assignment for school, and most of my entries were, “Today we went to the Colloseum. It was really cool, learning about all the history. But then, afterwards we went to this amazing restaurant! I had (insert what I had) and (insert long rant about how delicious it was).

    Sorry for the food rant! 😀


  21. It’s too bad the food was disappointing, but just hanging out at the markets would thrill me :)
    Love the tiramisu!

  22. Thanks so much Joanne! I’ve been hunting for a great tiramisu recipe for years… a long time ago I pulled together an incredible one that I lost the recipe for and have been trying to recreate since. I can’t wait to test this one out!

    With regard to food in Italy, you’re not alone. I was in Florence, Pisa and Lucca (the latter was by far the best for food and culture) and I didn’t experience any of the inconsistency that you did, but overall I didn’t think the pasta was any better than what we get at the plethora of excellent Italian restaurants in North America. For me it was the wine and gelato that were noticeably better than at home. I ate 3 cones of 1/2 pistachio and 1/2 nutella gelato every day! :)

    • Oh, and one suggestion for alcohol… instead of amaretto, try the Van Gogh Vodka in either Dutch Chocolate or Double Espresso (or a combo of both!). It is heavenly.

  23. hmm interesting review, and honest! i haven’t been to italy, but hope to someday…meanwhile ill just have to enjoy your tiramisu!

  24. I appreciate the recipe and have tried it….delicious.
    I travelled to Venezia [Venice] in September and found food not so great generally, in my limited experience. The pizza was terrible and expensive. A 12 inch pizza dough probably had a skiff of one tablespoon of tomato sauce on it and a couple of pieces of meat and very little cheese. Very poor and very expensive for basic dough! I then went to a local pub [called BEFeD Brew Pub] and had a wonderful meal of roast chicken. I guess that I just prefer Chicago-style deep Dish Pizza………..

    During the trip, I went to one of the Islands around Venice and dined at a Hungarian restaurant….wonderful meal with five courses…and friendly service……

    A friend of mine [who married a girl from Italy] corroborates the need to go into smaller communities to really appreciate the essence of Italian cuisine…and that is what I plan to do on my next trip….

  25. So its a total of 4 tbsp amaretto isnt it?
    Anyways, it sounds so easy yet so tasty! I’ll try it someday :)

  26. Ive tried making this tiramisu, but it failed :( Ive put the tiramisu the whole night in the refrigator, but it’s still watery! What have i done wrong?

    • Hi Suet, I’m sorry to hear that you did not have success and I would love to help you figure out what might have happened. When you say it’s watery, is it homogenous but too thin/watery, or is it watery in the sense where water is “leaking out” aka weeping?

  27. I made this for my girlfriend and she loved it. Mine also didn’t turn out as firm as the picture, but it wasn’t “watery” like the last comment. It was somewhere between pudding and bread pudding. This was the first time I made something with “stiff peaks” or had to “fold” a mixture so I might have to check my technique, but it seemed like it matched the consistency of the mixture in the video. I think I could’ve fit more ladyfingers in the dish – there was a centimeter gap at the edge where another wouldn’t have fit lying flat, but I could’ve wedged one in if I rotated it. Maybe next time I won’t dunk them as long either so they’ll be firmer (I did about five seconds each and rotated 2-3 times). I also had it under the light on the top shelf in my fridge, so maybe that affected how it settled. I’m experimenting with freezing the last piece to see if I can get it firmer. That’s probably an amateur move, but I’m just curious :)

    I also noticed the video had an extra 2 tbsp of amaretto in the espresso dunking step that the written instructions didn’t have. I went with the video’s approach because the Disaronno smelled so good. Tasted great. Thanks for posting this!

    • Hi Scott, I’m so glad your girlfriend loved the tiramisu! I think in the photo it looks firmer than it really is. It should definitely be something you eat with a spoon, and it sounds like from the description of the texture, your technique was good! If you’d like a firmer ladyfinger absolutely you can soak them for less time. Brands vary in firmness, but I find that I can usually gauge when it’s gone too long if it starts to fall apart at all.

      HAH! Sometimes I add a little extra amaretto…I can’t help myself. And it’s exactly for the reason you described…the stuff is just heavenly!!

      • Ah, that makes sense. It was a bit firmer after I chilled it in the freezer and the texture was perfect for cutting cleanly with a fork. Can’t wait to make it again. Thanks Joanne!

  28. In the video, amaretto is added to the egg yokes, as well as to the espresso. This is different from the typed directions, which only include amaretto in the espresso. Well, I followed the steps in the video, and now I am a bit worried that the liqueur made the mascarpone/egg mixture curdle. I guess I’ll know for sure in 6 hours.

    • Correction, the typed direction do call for amaretto in the yokes, but not in the espresso. What is the correct prescription? In the yokes or in the espresso, or both?

      • Hi Rachel, both ways are fine. Sometimes I add it to the espresso when I want the amaretto flavor in the ladyfingers too, and sometimes I don’t (frankly it doesn’t matter very much). Adding amaretto to the espresso makes no difference in terms of its effect on the texture of the mixture. I’m unclear about the curdling, did you have trouble with the mixture? Let me know and I’ll try to help troubleshoot.

  29. Can i substitute amaretto with rum? Can you make another recipe for substituting raw eggs with heavy cream? ^^

    • Unfortunately I don’t recommend using rum, as it is quite different from the amaretto. Also the whipped eggs and heavy cream don’t have similar consistencies, so I can’t recommend that substitution either :(

  30. hi Joanne, I enjoy watching your video and pics~ I can’t wait to try the tiramisu now!
    Do you know where can I get amaretto liqueur? What brand did u use for lady fingers?

    • Hi Alice! You can get Amaretto at any liquor store. I like C&L Cristiani, it’s really good and isn’t expensive. Any brand of ladyfingers that’s imported from Italy should be decent! Enjoy!

  31. Hi. I made this tiramisu (single layers) and the Blondie Brownies 2 days ago for a work potluck and it was a huge success. Everyone loved it and I only got to taste a sponnful of the tiramisu before it disappeared.

    My only problem was that even after over 10 hours in the fridge, the consistency was not stiff enough to cut into squares. After awhile out it just fell apart. How can I make it thicker/stiffer?
    Should I freeze it instead and take it out about a hour before serving it to thaw it out?


    • Hi Mercedes, glad it was a success! As far as the consistency of the tiramisu, it sounds like you’re expecting this to be much stiffer than it ever will be. There are some tiramisus thickened with cornstarch that are thicker, but this intentionally has a light, airy, delicate texture. You can serve in individual containers if you wish. I don’t recommend freezing.

  32. Hi, Joanne,
    I lived in Italy for four years, married an Italian woman, moved back to “the States”, and return to Italy frequently. I’m also a bit of a “foodie”. I’ve made tiramisu many times, and was searching the web for some inspired twists on this traditional Italian treat, when I happened upon your blog. The recipe looks to be pretty good, and I can hardly wait to try your variation.
    I should say, however, that because this dessert has been around a lot longer than espresso and has always been a standard homemade dish, it is usually made with caffe made in a moka, rather than espresso. There’s a minor difference, but I think the caffe is generally more tenable than espresso. It’s also more economical. I’ve never even heard of espresso powder.
    I also wanted to say that you must have visited all the worst places to eat while in Italy, likely the tourist traps. Rome and Florence are most notorious for that, and judging by your pictures, that’s where you were. If you get to venture into the countryside, or go where the workers eat, I believe you’ll find, as I did, that the food far surpasses anything you’ll ever eat anywhere in France.
    I hope you get back to Italy and get the chance to try the real Italian cuisine.

  33. trying to get recipe to print without whole story which takes 8 pages. please help.

  34. That’s a great recipe and great detailed video. I have tried it out and was really eager to taste it!!!! However, I do have a few questions remaining. I checked a lot of tiramisu recipe, what really confuses is the ratio between egg white, egg yolk and mascarpone cheese. I don’t what to waste the egg white, so I used only 3 egg yolks. And I am wondering is that necessary to add the amaretto liqueur into the creamy mixture if I am actually liking the liquor so much. Finally, I only got original premium bacardi rum available, is that OK to use? If you could provide me some questions, I would really appreciate it. Anyway, it seems to be the best tiramisu I have seen by far!!! Thank you very much.

  35. I’ve been to Italy several times to visit family in Northern Italy and before seeing them have been to Rome, Venice and many other places in Italy several times in my life. I also find the food in the tourist locations and in the small towns in Italy very underwhelming and some places just plain bad! :( I think many of the restaurants are not even owned and managed by Italians. They also don’t seem to care to impress because they know you might just be in town for a few nights so they don’t need you to return. Italians don’t eat out much and even in the smaller towns you’re eating at the places italians who vacation there would eat at. Those places don’t have much competition so they don’t have to try hard. There will be another unknowing hungry tourist/italian vacationer the next day. Because of my hunger from the night before I tend wake up extra early though to pig out on the delicious morning buffet breakfast at my hotel. That is always delicious. I think next time I will purchase the lunch and dinner at my hotel it just makes it hard to venture off far from the hotel at those times when you want to explore the city. Maybe I will pack a lunch of cold cuts and bread from breakfast then return to the hotel for dinner.

  36. R. Bakke, Oslo, Norway

    I read about your experiences in Italy and that you do not like pasta with “just sauce”. Keep in mind that in Italy the pasta dish is normally used as a first course, not the main course, with the sauce used sparingly and in accordance to the shape of the pasta.

  37. Hello… I tried this recipe .. it’s easy, quick and extremely delicious

  38. Hi,
    I completely agree with what you said about the food in Italy, the same happened to me, I guess I had high expectations because everyone says that italian food is the best. Or because my italian side of the family has really good cooking skills that I adopted too so maybe my expectations were really high. I remember my first day in Milan I had a lasagna that was heated in the microwave and ot was suposedly in a chic area of the city. My godmother lived there for more than 20 years and ahe told me it was a good restaurant so I was pretty shocked but I still really fell in love with Italy and I am looking fprward to go back at any moment. Especially venice is my favourite place ever.
    I foind this on Pinterest and I am making this for my brother’s birthday since Tiramisu is his favourite desert. I will give it a try but it looks amazing.
    And for some people who wanted to know where to get mascarpone or if you find it pricy, you can look on pinterest or google, there is an easy recipe to make it at home with heavy cream and lemon. I will try it with that.
    Thank you for sharing your experience.

    • Hi Sofia, it’s interesting to hear your experience! Seems like there were quite a few people who felt the same way. I keep being told that the food is better out in the country, so that’s for next time!

  39. You might never see this but I LOVE tiramisu but cannot make my self order it because of the cost mos places.

    Anyway I tried to make you recipe and followed your instructions to the t. But My tiramisu NEVER set up it is still runny after being in the fridge for 24 hours.

    has this ever happened to you or do you have any suggestions to prevent it next time.

    • I read all my comments =) I’m happy to help troubleshoot! Just as an FYI, this isn’t a stiff tiramisu, as it’s not a version thickened with cornstarch or other stabilizers. If you’re looking for a version like that, I’ve seen a bunch that thicken with cornstarch (but imo they don’t have as good of a texture). However, it definitely shouldn’t turn out runny, so my best guess is that the issue was with the stage of egg whipping. The egg whites need to be at perfect stiff peaks (not soft peaks, or even worse at overwhipped/foamy), and the egg yolks needs to be well-whipped too. Do you think that could have been the issue?

  40. HI
    So actually we need 4 tbsp of liquor? 2 to egg yolk, and 2 to espresso?

  41. Does your recipe work without alcohol? If it’s without alcohol, do i need to make adjustment to other ingredients? Need  your advice. Thanks.

  42. Dear Joanne,

     I love your Tiramisu Recipe. Its very simple and easy to follow. I just have question. Would it change the content and taste of the Tiramisu if I do not use the liqueur?

    Thanks a lot. 

  43. Dear Joanne, I’ve just stumbled across this gorgeous recipe. It’s simply perfect!

  44. Hi, 

    I would like to ask is sponge finger same as lady finger?

  45. The thing I’ve discovered about Italy, is that you need to find the regional food.  Rome is much like other large cities, where the food caters largely to tourists (read: bland, for mass consumption).  The good food is found in the small towns.  Research what each area/town is known for, and eat that.  Also, I found that pasta is generally not meant to be the entire meal in Italy, only one course of many (this might be why you felt it was lacking, not everything is included in this one dish, because there are more to come). All that being said, my favourite in Rome was the charcuterie style plates as well. <3 Happy eating

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