Since starting this journey of eating gluten-free, desserts have always been my weak spot. That is until I decided to start baking gluten-free treats for myself! It’s been almost 2 years of slowing transitioning to gluten-free, and I can say that it’s gradually getting somewhat easier. In the beginning, I would doubt myself a lot…thinking is this really helping my health or am I just complicating things for myself. But after seeing the transformation of my skin, gut, and mental health went through after decreasing the amount of gluten I let into my body, I knew there was no turning back.
I still don’t know for certain if gluten is the only problem that was wrong with my diet, but it definitely made a difference. And after talking with some friends, I’ve learned that I’m not alone, many others are also sensitive to gluten, where they have the symptoms, but test negative for any disease. All I know is that you know your body best, so listen to it and take notes on things that upset it.
On a more happy note, my birthday just passed a few days ago and this year I decided that I was going to make my own gluten-free dessert! Other years I would eat a slice of my birthday cake and some cookies, and then later that night I would be regretting it so badly. This is my birthday and if I want to have dessert, I’m going to have it! Tiramisu has to be one of my favorite desserts, the pairing of my two favorites: chocolate and coffee!
I always thought about making tiramisu from home but always thought it seems like too much work. But, for my birthday I decided to take it head on! After looking on the internet, cookbooks, and referencing my family I came up with this gluten-free tiramisu recipe!
Birthday Tiramisu – Gluten Free
makes: 1 8x8in pan or 1 9in circle dish
For the ladyfinger cookies:
2 egg yolks
3 egg whites
1/2 Cup + 2 Tablespoons (120g) white sugar (divided later)
1 Cup + 2 Tablespoons (140g) Gluten-free flour (I used Better Batter; it already has xanthan gum)
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 Teaspoon xanthan gum (ONLY if your GF flour doesn’t have it)
1 Teaspoon baking powder
Sugar dusting before baking:
1/4 Cup powdered sugar
1/4 Cup white sugar
- Pre-heat oven to 375F
- In a bowl, mix 2 yolks and half of the white sugar (1/4 Cup + 1 Tablespoon), until pale yellow in color and doubles in volume
- Sift the gluten-free flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and IF your gluten-free flour doesn’t have it, the xantham gum; all into the egg yolk mixture
- In another bowl, whisk the 3 egg whites and slowly add the other half of the sugar (1/4 Cup + 1 Tablespoon), until stiff peaks form (don’t over whisk!)
- Gently fold the egg yolk mixture into the egg whites (it’s okay if there are some clumps, you can’t tell after they are baked)
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and using a piping bag or large plastic bag, pipe the batter onto the sheet
- Pipe they as long or as short as you need them (depending if you are making a large dish or just little individual tiramisu), make sure to leave about 1/2 inch between the cookies
- Combine the sugar dusting into a bowl and dust all the cookies generously! It’s okay to have a lot on the baking sheet
- Bake at 375F for 15 minutes, then lower the temperature to 310F and continue to bake for another 15-20 minutes, until the cookies look very slightly brown on the edges (you want them to dry out and become hard, this makes for a better tiramisu)
- Let them cool for 10 minutes before transferring onto a cooling rake to finish cooling
For the mascarpone whipped cream and coffee soaking liquid:
6 egg yolks
1 Cup (200 g) white sugar
1 1/4 Cups (284g) mascarpone (room temperature)
2 Cups (487 ml) heavy whipping cream
1 Cup (240 ml) strong coffee (chilled)
1/2 Cup Kahlua coffee liqueur (optional, if you don’t have just make more coffee)
1/4 cup cacao powder
- On top of a double boiler, mix the egg yolks and white sugar for about 10 minutes (make sure to stir constantly, this is the only slightly painful part…)
- Remove from the double boiler and cool slightly before whipping into a thick and lemon colored mixture
- Allow cooling (about 5 minutes) before mixing in the mascarpone
- In a large bowl whip the heaving whipping cream until stiff peaks form
- Gently fold in the yolk and mascarpone mixture into the whipped cream, then set aside
- In cup or bowl, mix the coffee and Kahlua, then take a ladyfinger cookie and allow it to soak fully before placing it into the pan of your choice (allow the ladyfinger to soak until it starts off feeling soft, you rather soak more than less..)
- Continue soaking ladyfinger cookings and placing them into the pan, once you completed the first layer takes the mascarpone whipped cream and cover the ladyfinger layer
- Repeat over and over as many times as you need until all the ladyfingers are gone, make sure to leave enough mascarpone whipped cream as the final layer
- Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 5 hours or overnight is better before eating
- Dust the top with cacao powder before serving!
Part 2: Mascarpone whipped cream and layering
I decided to make one 9 inch tiramisu and another small tiramisu. For the smaller tiramisu, I only used coffee to soak the ladyfingers instead of both coffee and Kahlua. After letting them both sit overnight, my family and I ate it the next day after dinner with some vanilla ice cream. For the first time making a gluten-free tiramisu, this was a great turn out.
For my brother and older sister, the coffee and Kahlua soak was a little strong for them, so when I make this the next time, I probably won’t brew the coffee as strongly and might lower the Kahlua to 1/4 cup from the 1/2 cup. However, if it was just me and my mom eating this, we loved it the way it turned out! Of course, we are both huge coffee lovers so we appreciated the strong coffee flavor that this tiramisu had!
Looking forward to the next dessert I will make during this Summer vacation!
Every day, Lai day! What is your favorite dessert??