My mission in the kitchen is to see how maple syrup can be used in everyday cooking where the maple makes for better or sometimes just different results. In all honesty, for some recipes the maple flavor is not discernible and I revert back to plain sugar. For some dishes the maple syrup makes the recipe infinitely better. This is one of those cases. This pastry is not only my favorite discovery of this season, it is possible I have found my Kryptonite.
My experience with Tiramisu is mostly from my days living in New York City. Little Italy still has a few cafes that make authentic Italian pastries and Tiramisu is a treat that you don’t find standard in many other places. The recipe consists of lady fingers (a type of Italian biscuit) soaked in coffee and liqueur and then sandwiched in layers of vanilla pastry cream. The pastry cream is made with Mascarpone, an Italian dairy product that is sort of like sour cream without being sour. The whole thing is topped with cocoa powder and chocolate shavings.
Recently, I was in our local market and spotted a tub of Mascarpone made by Vermont’s renowned Vermont Creamery. Lordy, I wish I hadn’t. The Mascarpone inspired me to try a Tiramisu that substituted a maple cream for the vanilla cream. It turned out well. Really, really well. I ate it for breakfast five days in a row. It is possible I might have also had it for dessert on those nights. My husband can tell you that for a food-obsessed person, I don’t actually eat that much. I ate all of this.
In the interest of not having to buy all new pants the next size up, all future production of this recipe in my house is going to be strictly regulated. But I highly recommend you try it yourself. I used rum with the coffee since rum and maple are so complimentary. The Mascarpone and lady fingers may be challenging to find, but if I could source them here in a rural area, you have a good shot in your local store. The Mascarpone from Vermont Creamery made for the most delicate, lovely pastry cream so if it is available in your area use it. I would try the recipe with other Mascarpones to compare but bathing suit season is just around the corner and I have come to terms with the fact that Maple Tiramisu is stronger than me.