How to make lemon tiramisu

I should be suggesting throwing away the mince pies and relinquishing the family size box of Quality Street chocolates. It is the new year after all a time when everyone seems to be embarking on some sort of diet or detox. No cutting back here though so I can’t very well advocating something I am not doing. January in the northern hemisphere is dark and depressing enough without getting rid of guilty pleasures as well. The only thing I am trying to limit this month is my red wine consumption.

The finished tiramisu drizzled with melted chocolate
So in the spirit of a January minus the austerity this is a recipe for tiramisu which I discovered on my visit to Umbria this year. Traditional Italians may frown because this is tiramisu flavoured with lemon rather than coffee. I do love coffee but not really in desserts. I prefer the two to be separate so this version of tiramisu has a lovely citrus tang from the lemons used rather than the bitterness of coffee.
One layer complete
500g mascarpone cheese
5 eggs separated
5 tbsp rum
5 tbsp caster sugar
7 lemons juiced and the zest of 1 lemon
500g lady finger biscuits
200g cocoa powder
Layering on the lady finger biscuits
1. Add pinch of salt to the egg whites and whisk into soft peaks.
2. In a separate bowl add the sugar, rum and lemon zest to the egg yolks and whisk, then add the mascarpone and whisk further until the mixture has a creamy consistency.
3. Fold the egg whites into the mascarpone mixture gently.
4. Mix the lemon juice with 500ml of water and brush a large, shallow dish with some of the mixture. Dip the biscuits quickly into the lemon juice mixture one at a time, don’t let them soak in the mixture as it is better the biscuits are too dry than too wet.
5. Arrange a layer of the biscuits along the bottom of the dish, then spread one third of the mascarpone mixture over the top of the biscuits and then finish with one third of the cocoa powder sprinkled over the top.
6. Repeat twice to create three layers.
7. Refrigerate for at least three hours before serving (or leave overnight).
Serves 8.
Tiramisu ready to go in the fridge
For other anti January recipes you might like this one for honey madelines or this for easy apple crumble.


  1. That looks delicious 🙂 I have some great limoncello which would go great in this I think!

  2. Sounds lovely. I’m also refusing to detox at the moment, although I did make a visit to the gym yesterday, more as a result of necessity since my body felt like it had been curled up in a ball for a month.

  3. I really like your addition of lemon, it must bring a really nice lightness (not in the calorie sense though LOL) to this beautiful desert.
    *kisses* HH

  4. I can’t say I’ve ever tried lemon tiramisu but hey when you’ve got mascarpone you can’t go wrong! This would be great for summer dinner parties too.

  5. It’s the coffee that puts me off tiramisu so I’m all for versions that omit it. Lemon is a very worthy substitute, I’d definitely order this on a menu!

  6. Mmmm, sounds heavenly, not even sure if I’ve tasted a lemon tira, great idea.

  7. Greedy Diva – I am doing the same as you. Yes to exercise – no to diets and detox. January is depressing enough!

    Helen – Perfect for Australian weather at the moment and a good one because you can prepare it ahead.

    Lorraine – Limoncello would add a great adult kick – good idea

    Sarah – I am the same so I think the lemon one would suit you!

    Anna – It was delicious

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  9. I love you in a foodie love way of course, I have always wanted Tiramisu, it sounds divine by name alone, but I do not like coffee flavoured dessert. Love coffee but not in sweet things.
    Off to buy all the ingredients and hope hubby will be disappointed the coffee is missing and wil not want to share.
    thank you.

  10. Jo – Sounds like you are a woman after my own heart – I hope it works out for you and you can enjoy your tiramisu sans coffee!

  11. I love the sound of this – my husband doesn’t like coffee and I love tiramisu. Maybe this is the compromise dessert I’ve been looking for.

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