It makes me blush now when I remember my once snooty disdain for tiramisu. Still, I feel my slight against the dish has been repaid in full, and then some. This version had been hovering at the back of my mind for quite some time before I first made it. Now try and stop me. Frangelico is one of my favourite sticky liqueurs: I love the bottle, which comes as though it's dressed in a cassock; I love the taste and smell, the nuttiest of all hazelnuts
. There's almost a buttery richness, but - and this is what heads off the sweetness - a dark smokiness beyond, much darker than its appropriately hazelnut hue would lead you to expect.
In bars in Italy, especially in the northwest, you can get a caffe corretto with Frangelico, in other words a shot
of espresso fortified (literally, here, 'corrected') with a hit of this. Of course you can have your coffee 'corrected' with a choice of many liqueurs, but this is my favourite (I'm also very keen on a snifter
of espresso liqueur
to which a drop or two of Frangelico has been added) and that exact co-mingling of flavours is what I'm aiming for here.
The recipe that follows is for an amply proportioned tiramisu, enough to fill a 9-inch square dish and feed a good 12 people. I went completely over the top during the photo shoot, and doubled quantities. Before then I never believed you could have too much of a good thing. Mind you, it didn't put me off for long: I'm always up for a bowl of this boozy, creamy lusciousness, and I'll think you find others are, too.
Note: As this dish contains raw egg, it is not suitable for people with compromised or weak immune systems, such as younger children, the elderly, or pregnant women.