Make this traditional Italian dessert.


  • 4 eggs (separated)
  • 4 tblsp icing sugar
  • 425 g mascarpone cheese
  • 125 ml strong, cold black coffee
  • 4 tblsp brandy
  • 2 tblsp rum
  • 24 sponge fingers (or boudoir biscuits)
  • 100 g grated dark chocolate
  • 4 tblsp mixed nuts (chopped, optional)


  • In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs and sugar together until pale and creamy.
  • Blend in the mascarpone.
  • In a separate dish, mix together the brandy, rum and coffee, and dip each sponge finger or boudoir biscuit into this before layering them on the bottom and around the sides of a shallow serving dish.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff.
  • Using a metal spoon, fold the whites into the mascarpone mixture until well blended.
  • Spoon this over the fingers or biscuits and smooth the surface.
  • Sprinkle the top with grated chocolate, cover with cling film and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or, ideally, overnight as this will allow the dish to set completely, and the flavours to blend together properly.

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italian entertaining desserts and sweets