Mom's Birthday Extravaganza

6:06:00 PM

Today is my mom's birthday and as part of her present the kids have decided to make her dinner and I myself will be preparing home made tiramisu. As I was scavenging the grocery store, the one ingredient they didn't have was lady fingers, I was so surprised. But thanks to having a Google phone I was able to look up what it would take to make them myself and realized, "no big deal" and just decided I would make them from scratch as well. So we will start there:


Lady Finger Recipe

Ingredients:
1/2 cup (65 grams) cake flour, sifted
3 large egg yolks, room temperature

2 tablespoons(25 grams) granulated whitesugar, divided
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
large egg whites, room temperature
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
3 tablespoons (36 grams) granulated white sugar
Powdered (icing or confectioners)sugarfor dusting the tops of the cookies


Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.  To make the piping of the cookies easier, use a pencil and ruler to divide the parchment paper into three - 3 inch (7.5 cm) rows, with about 1 inch (2.54 cm) between rows.   Have ready a large pastry bag fitted with a 1/2 inch (1.25 cm) round tip.

In your electric mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the egg yolks and 2 tablespoons (25 grams) white sugar on high speed for about 5 minutes or until the mixture becomes thick and pale yellow.  (When you raise the beaters the batter should fall back into the bowl in a slow ribbon.)  Beat in the vanilla extract. Sift the cake flour over the batter but do not fold in.

In a clean bowl, with the whisk attachment, whip the egg whites until foamy.  Add the cream of tartar and continue to beat until soft peaks form.  Gradually add the 3 tablespoons (36 grams) white sugar and whip until stiff peaks form and the whites are glossy.  Fold the whites into the egg yolk and flour mixture in three additions, mixing only until incorporated. 

Transfer the batter to the pastrybag and, holding the bag at about a 45 degree angle to the baking sheet, pipe the batter into 3 inch (7.5 cm) long ladyfingers, using the lines drawn on the parchment paper as your guide.  Pipe the batter leaving about a 1 inch (2.54 cm) space between the cookies.  

Going into the oven

Bake 8-10 minutes

When you have piped all the cookies, place the powdered sugar in a wire strainer, and lightly sift the sugar over the tops of the cookies.  Bake for 8 to 10 minutesor until the ladyfingers are firm but barely browned and are still spongy when pressed with a finger.

Remove the baking sheets from the oven and slide the parchment paper from the baking sheets onto a wire rack.  Let the ladyfingers cool for a few minutes and release them from the parchment paper, with a flat spatula, while they are still warm.  If you left them completely cool before removing them from the parchment they stick and hard to remove without breaking.  Finish cooling the ladyfingers on the wire rack before using or storing.  If you are not using the ladyfingers right away, freeze them.  Ladyfingers stale very quickly unless they are soaked in a liquid.  To store, place in a plastic bag between layers of wax or parchment paper and freeze up to 2 weeks.

Makes about 4 1/2 dozen 3 inch (7.5 cm) Ladyfingers.

Sprinkle a little powdered sugar on top
Wa la! 
And these will go into the tiramisu! How yummy.

Now onto the tiramisu recipe, compliments of Giada de Laurentiis. I absolutely love her and think that she has amazing recipes.

Basic Tiramisu
Ingredients:
  • EGG YOLKS, 6
  • SUGAR, 3 tbs
  • MASCARPONE CHEESE, 1 lb.
  • STRONG ESPRESSO, 1-1/2 cups cooled
  • DARK RUM, 2 tsp
  • LADYFINGERS, 24 (packaged) -- I am going to use the ones I made earlier
  • BITTERSWEET CHOCOLATE SHAVINGS, 1/2 cup for garnish
Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer with whisk attachment, beat egg yolks and sugar until thick and pale, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add mascarpone cheese and beat until smooth.
  3. Add 1 tablespoon of espresso and mix until thoroughly combined.
  4. In a small shallow dish, add remaining espresso and rum.
  5. Dip each ladyfinger into espresso for only 5 seconds. Letting the ladyfingers soak too long will cause them to fall apart.
  6. Place the soaked ladyfinger on the bottom of a 13 by 9 inch baking dish, breaking them in half if necessary in order to fit the bottom.
  7. Spread 1/2 of the mascarpone mixture evenly over the ladyfingers.
  8. Arrange another layer of soaked ladyfingers and top with remaining mascarpone mixture.
  9. Cover Tiramisu with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, up to 8 hours.
  10. Before serving, sprinkle with chocolate shavings.
Yummmm


All ready to go...just waiting for the chocolate

This will go on top when we're all done in a couple hours :)



Also on the menu tonight we had home-made egg-less pasta with home-made pesto, topped with some grilled sea bass, salad and garlic bread.

Here's the recipe for the pasta:
Egg-less pasta is great for those who is on an egg-less or low-cholesterol diet will appreciate this recipe and it is super easy!

ingredients:

  • 2 cups semolina flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup warm water
             


 Directions:
  1. In a large bowl, mix flour and salt. Add warm water and stir to make a stiff dough. Increase water if dough seems too dry.
  2. Pat the dough into a ball and turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead for 10 to 15 minutes. Cover. Let dough rest for 20 minutes.
  3. Roll out dough using rolling pin or pasta machine. Work with a 1/4 of the dough at one time. Keep the rest covered, to prevent from drying out. Roll by hand to 1/16 of an inch thick. By machine, stop at the third to last setting.
  4. Cut pasta into desired shapes.
  5. Cook fresh noodles in boiling salted water for 3 to 5 minutes. Drain.

Toss it together with some pesto and it is all set to go! Simple, easy, delicious...Doesn't get any better than that!

Tossed with some home-made pesto, time to dig in!
Now time for dessert, how good does this look?? And it was super easy!



Perfect way to end the evening :)



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