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January 12, 2018

Authentic Tiramisu Recipe: Roman Style

authentic tiramisu recipe roman style

This past November, I had the wonderful opportunity to visit Il Fontanaro organic farm, villas and cooking school in the magical rolling emerald hills of Umbria, Italy. All my readers need to add this slow living countryside dream holiday to their Italy bucket list immediately. Il Fontanaro was my favorite Italy travel memory to date and I’m thrilled to share the full experience on this gorgeous countryside escape next week. For now a little teaser: the Tiramisu recipe that FOREVER changed Tiramisu for me.

authentic tiramisu recipe roman style

My beyond incredible host Alina happens to be a native to Rome, and true native Romans happen to hold the secret to the the best Tiramisu recipe in existence. It has a major heavenly twist which I’m sure the fates haven’t graced you with yet, and it’s brilliantly simple: Italian cookies, NOT ladyfingers.

That’s right. It’s time to throw your inherently stale, sad and hopeless ladyfingers into the rubbish bin and fill your Tiramisu supplies with cookies. I literally spent my midnights at Il Fontanaro devouring Alina’s Tiramisu fireside while watching The Sound of Music on repeat – essentially the best midnights of my life. Alina uses a delicious brand called Gentilini which I’ve yet to find in New York, but in my mission to recreate this at home I found experimenting with a few different types of cookies led to the most outrageously happy weeks of my life.

authentic tiramisu recipe roman style

The two key tips I have for selecting the perfect cookies is first to aim for a sweet-but-not-too-sweet treat that you could easily eat 12 of without issue. Oh, and it should be extra crispy (they are pros at soaking up all that wonderful espresso).

You’ll have to visit Alina at Il Fontanaro for her recipe (it’s too much of a treasure to claim as my own), but here is my slightly altered version which I know you’ll devour:


  • Cookies (one pack should do, but maybe buy two to be on the safe side)
  • 3 Eggs (yolks and whites divided)
  • Mascarpone (8 oz.)
  • Sugar (2 Tablespoons)
  • Freshly brewed espresso (1 cup)
  • Chopped dark chocolate and cocoa powder (sorry, not optional)


  • Brew espresso. Set aside and let it cool.
  • Whisk together the egg yolks until frothy (3-5 minutes). Add sugar and mascarpone, whisk together until a smooth custard consistency.
  • In a separate bowl and ideally using a mixer, whisk together the egg whites until stiff peaks form.
  • Gently fold the egg whites into the egg yolk-mascarpone mixture.
  • In a serving dish, add a layer of mixture.
  • Soak cookies in espresso and add atop mixture; top with cocoa powder and chopped chocolate.
  • Repeat until serving dish is full, ensuring final layer is your mixture topped with cocoa and chopped chocolate.


authentic tiramisu recipe roman style


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