Monday, February 7, 2011

Chocolate and Irish Coffee "Tiramisu"

The only ingredients this dessert has in common with real tiramisu are the espresso and booze.  It's prepared in the same way, however, and includes lots of chocolate, so what's not to love?  This recipe came about when I made a very poor attempt at chocolate whoopie pies (they spread too quickly and didn't puff as they're supposed to).  You can use any chocolate cake that's been made with flour--you'll want the cake to be able to absorb the coffee-whiskey mixture.

Ingredients:
Chocolate cake, cut into slices about 1/2-inch thick--you will need enough pieces to fit side-by-side in two layers in an 8x8 pan
4 oz brewed espresso (cooled)
3 Tbsps Irish whiskey
1 1/2 C heavy whipping cream, chilled
2-3 Tbsps sugar
small piece of dark chocolate, for topping (optional)

Procedure:
Make the whipped cream: put your stainless steel mixing bowl into the freezer for about 10 minutes so it gets very cold. Pour in the cream, 2 tablespoons of whiskey, and 2-3 tablespoons of sugar (depending on how sweet you want the whipped cream).  Beat the cream mixture on high speed until it forms stiff peaks.

Line the bottom of an 8x8 cake pan with some slices of the chocolate cake, making sure the slices are touching and that the bottom of the pan is covered. Mix the remaining tablespoon of whiskey into the espresso and drizzle just enough over the cake to moisten it. Gently spread some whipped cream over the cake so there are no exposed spots. Repeat a layer of cake, espresso-whiskey drizzle, and whipped cream.  Shave the dark chocolate (if using) over the top of the whipped cream. Cover and refrigerate for 2-8 hours before serving.

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