This is one of the most classic dessert, tiramisu, with a twist in it. We love the bitter-sweet espresso, savory mascarpone cheese, and ladyfingers version, but have you ever thought that this delicious treat is also great when combined with other flavor? If you have ever though that tiramisu with tea-infused does not go together, you are about to change your mind. I have got this Matcha Tiramisu recipe for you.
Tips on Making Matcha Tiramisu
Just like any other tiramisu, Matcha Tiramisu is made with moist rum-infused matcha sponge cakes, layered with creamy matcha mascarpone filling in between, and topped off with a dusting of matcha powder. This Matcha Tiramisu is layered in transparent individual servings so that you can see the delicious layers, making it perfect for individual dinner party dessert.
1. Choose the right matcha
Some of you may get confused about the difference of green tea and matcha. Don’t confuse matcha with the same green tea that you drink at home or Japanese restaurants. The names are slightly deceptive, because green tea and matcha are used interchangeably, but they are actually slightly different. Matcha and green tea both come from the same plant, camellia sinensis, but they are grown and processed differently.
Matcha is made from whole green tea leaves that have been pulverized into a super fine powder. Because the whole leaf is powdered and ingested, instead of just water infused through the tea leaves, matcha has significantly greater substances and deeper flavor than green tea. Moreover, you cannot grind the regular green tea to make matcha, considering matcha is made from shade-grown tea leaves. Processing regular green tea involves the leaves being left in the sun. Comparatively, matcha bushes are spesifically kept under cover to increase the chlorophyll and amino acid level in the leaves. That is why matcha has a much richer flavor than green tea.
Please note that matcha comes in both ceremonial-grade and culinary-grade. Ceremonial-grade is considered higher quality and should be used for drinking. Meanwhile, the culinary-grade powder is intended for baking and cooking purposes. For making ice cream, culinary grade matcha will suffice.
2. Use room temperature egg
Sponge cake should have a soft, delicate, spongy, and uniform crumb that absorbs the moisture from the syrup. To do this, sponge cake relies on beaten eggs to make it light. Make sure your ingredients are at room temperature. Cold eggs do not whip up easily and will not hold the same volume of air as a slightly warm eggs. If they are too cold, just soak them for a few minutes in a bowl of warm water.
3. Sponge cake’s alternatives
Traditional tiramisu is a pudding-like dessert that usually consists of sponge cake or ladyfingers dipped in a liqueur, then layered with rich curstard. If you are feeling lazy with making the sponge cake from scratch, you can substitute the sponge cake with commercial ladyfingers or plain sponge cake, just like any other tiramisu recipe. Ladyfingers do not taste like much on their own, just tender-crisp bites of dry sponge cake.
4. Do not soak the sponge cake
Do not soak the cut sponge cake into the syrup as overly soggy cake make for a wet texture and a messy dessert. Just spoon on the syrup over the sponge cake, making sure the sponge cake gets soaked with the syrup.
5. Do not scramble the egg yolks
Traditional tiramisu is often prepared using raw egg yolks. Raw eggs may contain bacteria called Salmonella, which can cause food poisoning. Unless you can find pasteurized eggs at the grocery store, those are safe to consume raw. Just to be safe, I cook the mixture of beaten egg yolks and sugar on a double-boiler (bain-marie technique) just to heat the egg yolks without curdling them. The method does not require a special pot, but can be created by setting a heat-proof bowl on top of a simmering pot of water. There should be space between the water and the bottom of the bowl, instead the bowl is only heated by the rising steam. Mix vigorously until the custard thicken and triple in volume. Then, it’s time to pull from heat and let cool.
6. Soften the mascarpone
Do not substitute mascarpone with cream cheese here when making tiramisu. While cream cheese is tangy, mascarpone is very smooth and buttery tasting. Mascarpone has a very high fat content and so will split more easily than double/whipping cream or cream cheese. Mascarpone does not need to be at room temperature, you can just leave it out of the fridge for a couple of minutes to soften slightly as it softens very quickly. If the mascarpone is warm then it is actually easier to over whisk it.
7. Chill the tiramisu
Once built, the tiramisu needs to chill for at least 6 hours before serving. The sponge cake will be absorb more flavor and the cream will set to a sliceable consistency. Just before serving, dust the top with matcha powder.
- 4 eggs separated
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar (100 gr)
- 3/4 cup all purpose flour (90 gr)
- 1 1/2 tbsp matcha powder
- 1/2 cup water (120 ml)
- 1 tbsp granulated sugar
- 1 tbsp matcha powder
- 1 tbsp rum
- 4 egg yolks
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar (50 gr)
- 1 tbsp rum
- 1 cup mascarpone cheese (225 gr) soften
- 1 tbsp matcha powder
- 1/2 cup heavy cream (120 ml)
- matcha powder for dusting
Preheat the oven to 350F/180°C. Grease a 12''x18'' / 30cmx45cm baking pan and line the bottom with parchment paper. Set aside.
Using a hand mixer or stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, whisk egg whites on low speed until frothy. Add salt, turn up the speed to medium. Slowly add sugar and turn the speed to high. Whisk until stiff peak is form and the mixture looks shiny.
Fold in egg yolks into the mixture with a spatula until well combined. Sift in flour and matcha. Fold until well combined.
Pour the mixture onto the baking pan and spread evenly using an offset spatula. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until the top springs back when lightly pressed.
Let the sponge cake cool in the pan on a rack. Set aside.
While waiting for the sponge cake to cook, bring water and sugar to boil in a small saucepan. Remove from heat and let it cool. Sift in matcha, add rum, and whisk until well combined.
In a heatproof bowl that rests easily in your saucepan without touching the surface of the water, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, and rum until the mixture doubles in volume, is pale, thick, and hot to the touch. Set aside to cool for about 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a mixer bowl, whisk heavy cream using an electric mixer until stiff peaks form.
Once egg yolk mixture has cooled, add the mascarpone and sift in matcha powder. Whisk the mixture until well combined. Then gently fold in the whipped cream in until smooth.
Cut out circles on sponge cake with a 2.5'' / 6cm cookie cutter.
In a 2.5''x3'' / 6cmx7.5cm glass, put in a cut out sponge cake. Spoon matcha syrup over the sponge cake, making sure it is soaked with the syrup. Spoon a dollop of the mascarpone cream mixture on top.
Repeat with layering filling and ladyfingers, creating 3 layers in total.
Cover and refrigerate for at least 6 hours. Right before serving, dust the top with matcha powder. Serve cold.