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Rhubarb Strawberry Tiramisù

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One of my most successful summer desserts.

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You are used to see die-hard-traditional dishes on FXcuisine.com. Today I present you a very successful and time-tested variation on the Italian dessert tiramisù [teerameesoo] (literally 'Pull-me-up'). Instead of a bitter-vs-sweet contrast, this recipes replaces the coffe with rhubarb for a tart-vs-sweet contrast. A huge hit during the summer, it has become a very popular family recipe in Switzerland and France.

Rhubarb-Strawberry Tiramisù
500gr / 1lb rhubarb
500gr / 1lb strawberries
1 vanilla pod
A drop of orange-rind-flavored brandy such as Grand Marnier
1 pack (200gr / 0.5 lb) finger biscuits (Biscuits roses de Reims, biscuits à la cuillère, Pêlerines)
4 eggs
100gr / 3 oz sugar
500gr mascarpone
Mascarpone [masskarrPOnay] is manufactured by mixing cream with tartaric acid. It is the bastird child of cream and butter and a rather extraordinary product.

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Peel the rhubarb where it is thickest. Leave some of the peel to have some tartness to balance the sweetness of the other ingredients.

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Discard the skins and trimmings.

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Using a sharp knife, cut the rhubarb in 0.5cm/ 0.2'' slices.

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Place in a saucepan with only 1 tbsp water, not more, and a vanilla bean sliced open and scraped. Simmer until soft and add enough sugar so that the rhubarb compote is tart but edible. Do not overcook, you want the rhubarb slices to retain a little of their shape.

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Flavor with orange rind brandy such as Grand-Marnier. Please consider that on my picture the rhubarb are overcooked - my mistake.

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Let's prepare the wonderfully nutritious mascarpone cream that will save us from starvation after the rhubarb-and-strawberry calorie desert. Separate egg whites from egg yolks, weight sugar and mascarpone.

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Cream the yolks with the sugar...

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... then add to the mascarpone.

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Whisk together ...

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... until smooth.

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Foam the egg whites ...

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... and gently fold them in with careful upwards movements with a paddle. The idea is to keep as many of the millions of air bubbles in the foamed whites. When you are a millionaire, even if only in air bubbles, you want to stay one.

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Wash the strawberries, stem and remove any stale parts.

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Slice the strawberries and, if the sun has been away on vacation while your strawberries where growing, discreetly add some sugar to boost the flavor.

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Take the finger biscuits «biscuits à la cuillère» and cut them in the largest bits that will fit your mold or glasses. These biscuits are made with foamed egg whites, sugar and a tiny bit of flour. They are very airy and, in a drinking contest , they will beat a Polish sailor any day.

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Place the biscuits at the bottom.

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Spoon just enough rhubarb compote to fully cover the biscuits. They will soak up the rhubarb juices.

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Cover the rhubarb layer with mascarpone cream.

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Continue with a generous layer of strawberries.

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Cover with a second mascarpone cream layer. You can place one good-looking strawberry slice on top. As you can see, my forte is not food styling. Ladies are just better at this. I've seen one cover her tiramisùs with crumbled pistachios - lovely.

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Store in the fridge for a couple hours. You can serve this in a huge bowl or in individual glasses of any shapes, like I did here. This is always a huge hit, I've been preparing this for 15 years now and it makes for a very refreshing dessert. The mascarpone cream is not commonly found on diet menus, but if you use many fruits there is not so much of it. And what do diet doctors know, anway?


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If you do this recipe at home please let me know how it worked for you by submitting a comment or send me a picture if you can. Thanks!



27 Comments

  • #1
  • Comment by JD
my god that looks tasty! been talking about rhubarb lately, now i got a recipe to try out!
I've always felt that traditional Tiramisu is a bit of a disappointment, what with the consistency of the soaked biscuits not really contrasting to the mascarpone cream at all, and with a rather dull taste. This looks like a great version, I never realized that tartness is just what Tiramisu needs.

I've also been wanting to try more rhubarb recipes (it usually ends up being rhubarb pie with custard; delicious, yet not very exciting in the long run), so this goes on the list.

Speaking of rhubarb, a tip: Jamie Oliver has a recipe in which he serves rhubarb compote with a yoghurt flavoured with orange zest and some honey -- delicious.
  • #3
  • Comment by Paulina  C. L. Tognato
I make traditional Tiramisu and another version with red fruits. In this case, I use some Angostura for a bitter taste.
I loved your idea to use rhubarb!! It's a new conception!!
I love too, your comments about "diet foods".
It's a pleasure reed your blog.
  • #4
  • Comment by Ben
FX you are a saviour. The other half and I are hosting a dinner party and we have been arguing over the dessert offering. Now I will take an executive decision and roll this out and serve this instead of pavlova or chocolate mousse.

Wow, that is pretty special.
  • #6
  • Comment by Barry Valentine
Great website fx, always hooked. i might want to make this for a special lady i'm trying to woo, however i was wondering if i made this the night before would it still be fine come desert time?
  • #7
  • Comment by agatha
Hmmm, this looks good! I will try this one for sure, I am a BIG fan of tradicional tiramisu and this one looks very interesting... I'll let you know how it worked out!
  • #8
  • Comment by Helena
Mmmm ... got to gather the ingredients and try this recipe out the next time there is a potluck gathering.

I didn't know full sun was what gave strawberries its sweetness. Thanks. I'll know what to keep an eye on for the strawberries going forward.

As for
>As you can see, my forte is not food styling.

I was just thinking, the discard the skins and trimmings picture looks great.

If you can make food scraps look that good ... that IS food styling. :)
  • #9
  • Answered by fx
JD, let me know how you like this recipe when you try it!
  • #10
  • Answered by fx
Daniel, I'm glad you like to recipe and soon you'll see another rhubarb recipe - a pie with meringue on top. Very tasty too!
  • #11
  • Answered by fx
Ben let me know how the other half liked it and good luck with the tiramisu!
  • #12
  • Answered by fx
Barry I think 12 hours is what I wouldn't exceed in the fridge if you can avoid it. But I've eaten them after 2 days and they are still great. Have a look at the Raspberry Chocolate Moelleux, very fit for a lady too and quicker to make. Good luck!
  • #13
  • Answered by fx
Agatha, perhaps you could make both kinds of tiramisù in small glasses and let your guests decide which they like most?
  • #14
  • Answered by fx
Helena, thanks for your visit! Yes I love pictures of peels and trimmings, there is much poetry in the transient beauty and contrasts of colors and texture right before they move to the bin. Sun is the essential ingredient in the strawberry - you are eating condensed sun in a way.
  • #15
  • Comment by maria
The tiramisu sounds great but the raw eggs will keep me from making it (sigh). Too risky.
  • #16
  • Comment by Janne
I will do this tomorrow for midsummer party. Hopefully it will taste good without Grand-Marnier.
  • #17
  • Answered by fx
Maria, I know raw eggs are not the safest food there is, but I know the hen personally so I felt safe!
  • #18
  • Answered by fx
Janne, good luck for your midsummer party! I hope it went well, you really do not need the Grand Marnier and can use other fruit brandies instead.
  • #19
  • Comment by Ryan
I made this the other day with my girlfriend and it was fantastic, even her father liked it
  • #20
  • Answered by fx
Ryan, I'm glad you liked the dessert but this was more for a romantic, just-us-two sort of meal! I hope your father-in-law gave you good marks in his book, after a dessert like this sounds like the only decent thing to do!
  • #21
  • Comment by Reynard
This is a wonderful site, one of the best I've seen lately! Great photos, great recipes, good job!

As for the Tiramisu, I've always been a fan of the traditional one but the last couple of times I went to my favourite restaurant I got served something that resembled this one more - fruit with cream. Therefore, I decided to give this one a go. Overall, it was good, and the fruit were nice, as were the cookies at the bottom. One thing I thought was not quite perfect, though, was the Mascarpone cream - for me it tasted way too much of the eggs which was not very nice. I think that due to the quite bland taste the Mascarpone possesses, something else ought to be added to the cream - but I have yet to find what it should be. Once I do, I will maybe post it here in the comments.

Again - great site, thanks for the inspiration!
  • #22
  • Answered by fx
Reynard, thanks for visiting! Yes, mascarpone egg cream does taste a lot like the egg yolks, but you could use less eggs if you don't like them.
  • #23
  • Comment by judy marak
Love the pictures; they are helpful as well as beautiful.  Have some rhubarb in the refrigerator right now.  Why not savoiardi for the biscuits? They look the same and are easy to obtain.
  • #24
  • Comment by Ася
Можно выйти за вас замуж?
  • #25
  • Comment by Rosalie lee
Delightful desriptions.  Intriguing and delicious reading.  I will definitely make it  (with the pistachio topping) my next dinner party.  Loved your colour saturated photos, very much.
  • FX's answer→ Hope you got around to trying it!

  • #27
  • Comment by Genesis
Your recipe looks delicious!! I was wondering how long can these be kept out of the fridge since they have the raw eggs in the cream. I would love to make these for a wedding ;)

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