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This coming week is the Jewish holiday Shavuot, in which it is tradition to serve dairy foods of all sorts. I have the craving to make Tiramisu this holiday, a very dairy dessert, albeit using a very Italian cheese (Mascarpone). This version doesn’t fit the standards of the traditional Italian form which is usually made and served in family sized portions. When made in one large baking dish this dessert has the tendency to “get messy”- after taking out piece by piece to serve to your guests the beautiful layers become blurred. Although beauty can be found in messy desserts, I have a weakness for desserts served in individual glasses. I’ve decided to share this individual size tiramisu recipe. The Mascarpone should be taken out of the fridge about 15 minutes before preparation, so that it can soften a bit.

Ingredients for 6 servings:

3 egg yolks

½ cup sugar

½ pound mascarpone cheese

1 cup heavy cream

2 teaspoons instant coffee powder or espresso powder, mixed with a half a cup of warm water

¼ cup Kahlua liqueur (Marsala or Amaretto work fine as well)

3.5 oz. Lady fingers

For decoration:

Cocoa Powder


  1. Using a mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy.
  2. In a separate bowl, using a wooden spoon, mix the mascarpone cheese until it softens and then fold in the egg yolks and sugar mixture.
  3. Using a mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whisk the heavy cream until firm. Gradually fold in the whipped cream to the mascarpone mixture until all ingredients are combined.
  4. In a medium bowl, mix the coffee with the liqueur. Dip the lady fingers in the bowl with the liquids, break them in half and place two (four halves) in each small serving bowl.  Pour the cream evenly on top of each bowl.
  5. Cover each bowl with plastic wrap, refrigerate for at least 4 hours. Sprinkle cocoa powder over each bowl and serve.

Check back this coming Tuesday for a special Shavuot recipe!