For topping: Toss sliced strawberries and pitted fresh cherries with a little sugar and almond liqueur; add shaved chocolate.
2 family-size tea bags
1 1/2 cups sugar, divided
2 (8-oz.) containers mascarpone cheese
1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
2 cups whipping cream
2 (3-oz.) packages ladyfingers
1 to 2 tsp. unsweetened cocoa
How to Make It
Bring 4 cups water to a boil in a 3-qt. heavy saucepan; add tea bags. Remove from heat; cover and steep 10 minutes.
Discard tea bags. Add 1 cup sugar, stirring until dissolved. Bring tea mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, and cook, stirring occasionally, 20 to 22 minutes or until mixture is reduced to 1 cup. Remove mixture from heat, and let cool to room temperature (about 30 minutes).
Stir together mascarpone cheese, vanilla bean paste, and remaining 1/2 cup sugar.
Beat whipping cream at medium speed with an electric mixer until soft peaks form; fold into cheese mixture.
Separate ladyfingers in half. Arrange 24 ladyfinger halves, flat sides up, in the bottom of an 11- x 7-inch baking dish. Drizzle with half of tea mixture. Top with half of cheese mixture. Repeat layers once. Cover and chill 12 hours. Sift cocoa over top just before serving.
I doubled the recipe for a large group. It was very tasty although a little sweet. I had to make my own marscapone as the store was out. I am trying it again with regular marscapone to see if there is a difference.
Good, but not as much tea flavor as I would have liked. The cookie part was a little too sweet also. If I make it again, will increase the # of tea bags to 3 or 4, and decrease amount of sugar in the tea to 3/4 or 2/3 cup instead of a full cup. It took about 35-40 minutes to get the syrup reduced to 1 cup instead of only 20 mins as the recipe said.
This was a HUGE hit at a recent gathering. Will definitely make again. However, I think I'll try making more of the sweet tea reduction to get a more thorough and even distribution of the tea over the ladyfingers
Delicious, easy, definitely worthy of a special occasion. Subtle flavors & smooth texture. Two tips: don't let the syrup get too hot -- and let the marscapone come to room temperature before combining with the sugar and vanilla so it mixes smoothly. Great with strawberries.
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