|Ladyfingers||3 Ounce (or sponge cake)|
|For the syrup|
|Granular sugar||1⁄2 Cup (8 tbs)|
|Water||3⁄4 Cup (12 tbs)|
|Instant espresso/Instant coffee||1 Tablespoon|
|Coffee liqueur||2 Tablespoon|
|For the filling|
|Heavy cream||2 Cup (32 tbs)|
|Mascarpone cheese||8 Ounce|
|Confectioners sugar||1⁄2 Cup (8 tbs), sifted (10-X Powdered sugar)|
|Marsala wine||1⁄2 Cup (8 tbs) (a sweet one such as Florio)|
|Vanilla extract||2 Teaspoon|
|Coffee liqueur||1 Tablespoon (Optional)|
|For whipped cream|
|Heavy cream||1 Cup (16 tbs)|
|Powdered sugar||1 Tablespoon, sifted|
|Vanilla extract||1 Teaspoon|
|Dark chocolate/Mini semi-sweet chocolate chips||2 Ounce, shaved (Optional)|
|Cocoa powder||2 Tablespoon (Optional)|
1. To prepare syrup: In small saucepan, combine sugar and water. Bring to boil on medium-high, stirring occasionally.
2. Remove from heat, stir in instant coffee and 2 tablespoon coffee liquor. Allow syrup to cool to room temperature before using.
3. Line cookie tray with plastic wrap.
4. Dip each ladyfinger into room temp coffee syrup. Let set briefly on lined cookie tray to allow ladyfingers to absorb syrup. Cut ladyfingers in half width wise. Arrange pieces in single layer on bottom and/or sides of 8 mini glass serving dishes (about 5 oz each). Set aside.
5. Prepare tiramisu filling: Whip 2 cups of heavy cream to medium peaks in a stand mixer; set aside.
6. Add mascarpone cheese, powdered sugar, wine, vanilla extract, and 1 Tbsp coffee liquor if desired, to food processor fitted with a blade. Pulse 10-12 times or until all ingredients are well-blended.
7. Transfer cheese mixture to larger mixing bowl and add whipped cream. With long-handled rubber spatula, fold whipped cream into cheese mixture until well combined. The finished filling should have consistency of soft-to-medium peak whipped cream. If filling seems a bit loose, whip briefly with stand mixer or hand whisk until soft-to-medium peaks form.
8. Cover ladyfingers with tiramisu filling to top of serving dishes and level with straight side of pallete knife. Refrigerate at least 3 hours or overnight, covered.
9. Serving options: Top filling with an even, single layer of dark chocolate shavings or small dark chocolate chips and/or sweetened whipped cream. Dollop sweetened whipped cream onto chilled tiramisu filling, forming peaks as you go.
10. Add cocoa powder to small hand sifter; evenly coat sweetened whipped cream with cocoa powder.
11. Serve slightly chilled with crisp cookies.
Syrup can be made ahead and refrigerated until needed.
Soaking syrup can be made with leftover coffee in place of the water and instant espresso.
To avoid over-soaking, submerge ladyfingers completely but quickly in and out of syrup.
To whip cream: add 1 cup heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract to bowl of stand mixer. Whip on medium speed until medium stiff peaks are formed.
Make the dessert up to 2 days ahead.