Tiramisù: the origin and the history of the most popular italian dessert

Tiramisù Amore Mio - Original recipe

Tiramisù Amore Mio - Original recipe

The "classic" Tiramisù is considered one of the best Italian desserts, everyone knows its taste and its deliciousness, but not many do know who created it and how. Here you will find what you need to know about it. (An extract from “Tiramisu Amore Mio” by Varinia Cappelletti & Edoardo Cecotto.)

The origin and the history of the most popular Italian dessert, eaten worldwide: the  "tiramesù " (name in  Venetian dialect ) by the pastry chef  Roberto Linguanotto.

    ...."So, one day, I put together some simple and well-known ingredients and tried to make the whole “portionable”: this is how this cake was born. It was immediately named “tiramesù” (pick-me-up)!

The ingredients, however simple, have to be first quality: from the coffee to the ladyfingers, from the mascarpone to the eggs. I was persauded to have given birth to a successful cake, and this convinction was confirmed by the high quantity of portions served every day, and especially by the high number of customers that asked for a second serving!

The rest is history..., Tiramesù (afterwards renamed Tiramisù) is the best known Italian cake in the world, the most widely eaten and appreciated. Now like then, at the Beccherie restaurant in Treviso, the Campeols make it this way, in its original round shape..." 

Tiramesù has changed during the years – some ingredients have been replaced , some added. In the mid 70s, in my ice-cream parlour “Glacia Shop” in Mestre (near Venice), I replaced the savoiardi (ladyfingers) with sponge cake, because -due to the high consumption of Tiramesù – I had to make it on large trays so that I could cut it into square slices.

Savoiardi may be replaced by:

- Sponge cake

- Pavesini cookies

- Pandoro cake (Christmas Tiramesù)

- Milk cookies

- Sardinia savoiardi (much bigger than the classic ones)

Mascarpone (all or half of it) may be replaced by:

- Ricotta cheese (Light Tiramesu’)

- Custard

- Whipped cream

- Whipped egg whites

Egg yolks may be replaced by:

- Zabaglione





Makes 4-6 servings

• 1 Cup 8 Oz. (226 g.) Mascarpone Cheese room temperature)

• 6 Egg yolks

• 1 Cup 8 Oz. (226 g.) of Sugar

• 30 Ladyfingers

• 2 Cups Black Coffee (Espresso)

• Cocoa powder



1. Make the coffee (espresso coffee); let cool in a bowl

2. Whip 6 egg yolks with sugar until stiff; fold the mascarpone cheese into yolk mixture thus obtaining a soft cream

3. Dip 15 Ladyfingers into the coffee, not to soak them

4. Arrange them in a line, in the middle of a round dish

5. Spread half of the cream over the Ladyfingers, then make another layer of Ladyfingers (soaked into coffee) and spread the remaining mascarpone cream over it

6. Dust the top the cocoa powder using a sifter

7. Serve chilled


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