It should come as no surprise that Irish cream tiramisu is my new favorite thing.
Coffee + dessert + Bailey’s irish cream all whipped together for a lovely light but decadent treat? Heaven on earth I tell you! Just in time for Saint Patrick’s Day too.
We need a little treat to celebrate, after all.
Plus, I’m so glad I’m long gone from the green beer/green vodka phase. Ooomph.
Oh my gosh.
As a huge fan of tiramisu and an even huger (?) fan of Bailey’s (or homemade irish cream!), this is my dream dessert.
I’ve made many versions of tiramisu over the years (there’s a tiramisu bread pudding in The Pretty Dish which is wonderful) but have never tried it with irish cream. Which is mind blowing!
Since we’re coming up on mid-March, I figured this was the perfect recipe to share for Saint Patrick’s Day – and bonus points for it not including Lucky Charms. I mean, one can only take so many squeaky-teeth marshmallow cereal desserts.
This is my grown up Saint Patrick’s Day dessert, which probably sounds horrific to true Italians. But thankfully I’m Irish and just want to consume all the Irish cream!
So here we are.
My parents always had Bailey’s over ice during special times – like on holidays with desserts, or even as a dessert on Saturday night. As a kid, it smelled so so good to me. When I turned 21, it was one of the first liqueurs I couldn’t WAIT to try. And even though I didn’t love coffee back then, I always loved the smell of coffee. The coffee scent to me has always been comforting – it was the first thing I could smell everyday waking up.
So the idea of irish cream in coffee was also something I just couldn’t wait to have once I was older. I even made homemade irish cream liqueur when I first started the blog! It’s so good, but takes a while to come together. Stash that recipe in your back pocket when we get closer to the holiday season, and you can gift it!
Another thing? When I was a kid, I always assumed the ladyfinger cookies were actually cake in the tiramisu. I think many people still do! But they are actually crisp cookies, and once they take a super quick bath in some coffee and irish cream, they soak it up like a sponge. And then they create the most wonderful cake-like layer with the best cloud-like mascarpone filling.
The combination is just so delish.
I like to add a little more Irish cream to my espresso mixture when soaking the cookies. It’s no where near as potent as rum and of course, I want to maximize the flavor. You could also add a drop or two to your whipped cream!
Speaking of, the tiramisu recipe that I like best comes from the NYT. It does use raw egg yolks (just make sure to use pasteurized version), but it doesn’t use the whites and instead uses heavy whipped cream. I LOVE this combo. It makes a perfectly creamy, cloud-like, whipped mousse filling that melts in your mouth. Yet at the same time, it can hold up well to the liqueur soaked ladyfingers and doesn’t turn into mess. I make just a few modifications and can’t even handle how good it is.
The filling is silky, the cookies soak up the booze and when served with a cup of coffee, it’s such a treat. Wish it could be in my fridge 24/7!
Irish Cream Tiramisu
Bailey’s Irish Cream Tiramisu
- 4 large (pasteurized) eggs yolks
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 8 ounces mascarpone cheese
- 12 ounces strong brewed espresso
- ¼ cup Irish cream liqueur
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 8 ounces ladyfingers, about 24 cookies
- 2 ounces milk chocolate, freshly grated/shaved
- Note: I like to use an oval baking dish, a 9 inch square dish or even a 9 inch round pie plate for tiramisu! If you use the oval or round dish, you need to break apart some of the ladyfingers in order to have them fit around the edges. It’s simple!
- In a bowl, beat together the egg yolks and ¼ cup of sugar until the yolks are pale yellow in color and the mixture doubles in volume. This takes about 5 full minutes. You want the mixture to fall like ribbons from the beaters once it’s ready.
- In another bowl, beat the heavy cream, vanilla extract and remaining ¼ cup of sugar until medium peaks form. Add in the mascarpone cheese and beat just until combined and the mixture is spreadable. Scoop this mixture into the bowl with the egg yolks and gently fold them together until combined.
- In a shallow bowl, whisk together the espresso and irish cream liqueur.
- Place the cocoa in a fine mesh strainer. Sprinkle some all over the bottom of the baking dish until it’s covered.
- Take each ladyfinger and dip it in the espresso/irish cream until soaked through. Don’t oversoak, as the ladyfingers will fall apart. When I do this, I dip a ladyfinger, count to 3, and then flip it and count to 3 again. Place the ladyfinger in the dish and repeat with more ladyfingers, until you have a single layer of the soaked ladyfingers.
- Spread half of the mascarpone mixture over the ladyfingers. Sprinkle on a little more cocoa powder. Repeat with remaining ladyfingers - dipping them in the espresso, then placing them in a single layer. Once finished, top with the remaining mascarpone.
- Sprinkle the remaining cocoa powder on top. Sprinkle the shaved chocolate on next. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours or even overnight.
- When you’re ready to serve, scoop it out into dishes! I do not worry about serving this in perfect squares, though it will look like a fancy restaurant dessert if you do that. I like to use a spoon and scoop it so everyone can enjoy!
- This lasts for a few days in the fridge (if you don’t eat it all first!).
Could eat a bowl of that cream on its own!