Whew! I love whirlwind weekends that feel as though the entire time was one big fat shindig. That’s pretty much how this weekend went. Bradley’s parents came to town for a visit so we did so many fun things! One night we went to watch one of Juliet’s hockey games. She played well, but they lost.
Generally I plan my weekly themes out a couple weeks so I can attempt to be a bit organized – or so I tell myself. Originally I had one idea but found out I was going to have thirteen people for dinner, it was going to be too much to keep it hot and fresh. So I needed something cold or room temperature that I could make ahead of time.
Cream cheese seemed like a fun idea since I realized that mascarpone is Italian cream cheese and I could make tiramisu! I was so happy about that revelation!!! I love tiramisu, especially the creamy cheese filling. I decided to up the chocolate giving you as much as I could possibly pack in. So I gave you a lot. Chocolate ladyfingers. Chocolate ganache. Chocolate meringue. Triple chocolate goodness.
We took his parents down to the beach one morning and we had breakfast. It was a gorgeous day, a balmy 70 degrees in the sun, big waves, and lots of people hanging out playing volleyball or even just sun tanning. It was a fantastic day to take a long walk and enjoy the sights, and really there is nothing better than enjoying a leisurely breakfast, at the end of a pier, with a great view of the ocean.
When we got back the ladies got into a whirlwind of cooking, Bradley’s mom Sue and Juliet both helped put different parts of these tiramisu’s together. Sue helped make the ladyfingers and Juliet helped dip the ladyfingers into the coffee and rum mixture. She did loudly complain after that her fingers smelled like the mixture for awhile after. I’m not sure what could be better than smelling like rum and coffee. I suppose when you are 14, it’s not as fun of a smell.
So yes, we had thirteen people for dinner. It was a lot of fun. Juliet was the ‘king’ of the night since she had found the nut in our family King Cake, she got to choose dinner. We had barbecued tri tip, scalloped potatoes, green beans, creamed corn and of course tiramisu and chocolate cake for dessert. Needless to say, we were all stuffed!
One of my favorite after family dinner activities is playing board games. Do you do a game night? I know a lot of people have a dedicated night which I think is great. Games can be so fun as well as strategic, I know they taught me how to really think through problem solving. I still am not nearly as good as Bradley, but he makes me push myself so I’ve gotten better. One of our favorite games is Survive Escape From Atlantis. It’s only a four person game but we have easily played teams with it. It’s simple to learn, only like 45 minutes long and it’s different every time. Very addicting!
- 1 Cup all-purpose flour
- 6 egg yolks
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 6 egg whites
- ½ cup minus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- Powdered sugar, for dusting
- 3 egg yolks
- ½ cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons rum
- 1 tablespoon coffee
- 1 cup mascarpone cheese, room temperature
- 3 egg whites
- Pinch sugar
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 12 ounces dark chocolate chips
- 6 egg whites
- ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
- ¼ teaspoon sugar
- 1 cup coffee
- 2 tablespoons rum
- Chopped chocolate pieces for sprinkling
- To make the ladyfingers, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or non-stick mats.
- Place the egg yolks and vanilla in a mixing bowl and whip on high until pale yellow and thick, about 5 minutes. Set aside. In a separate clean bowl, beat the egg whites and sugar to stiff peaks. Add the whipped egg yolks to the egg whites and very gently fold in until only a few yellow streaks remain.
- Add the flour and gently fold in until just barely combined. Take care not to overwork the batter. Scoop the batter into a large piping bag fitted with a large round tip. Pipe into long fingers across the prepared baking sheets about 3 inches long and 1 inch wide. Dust with powdered sugar using a fine mesh sieve and let sit for one minute. Dust one more time with powdered sugar and bake in the preheated oven for about 10 minutes, or until lightly golden brown.
- For the mascarpone cream, mix the egg yolks, sugar, rum and coffee for two or three minutes until light yellow. Add mascarpone and mix well. In a seperate bowl whip egg whites and sugar to stiff peaks. Fold in the mascarpone mixture.
- For the ganache, heat heavy cream until very warm, do not boil. Turn off heat and add all chocolate. Mix until thouroughly combined.
- For the meringue, beat egg whites, sugar, cocoa and cream of tartar until they reach stiff peaks.
- Mix coffee and rum in a small bowl.
- Layer tiramisu in a small glass or 8x8 sized pan. Dip ladyfingers in coffee and rum mixture, make a single layer in the glasses. Top with a spoonful of mascarpone mixture then a spoonful of chocolate ganache. Repeat with another layer of ladyfingers, cream, and ganache. Top with meringue and chopped chocolate.