When people talk about how making tiramisu can be a big challenge, I've always secretly rolled my eyes a little. Inside, anyway. I mean, what's the big deal? It's not like there aren't four squillion recipes you can find to follow. Find one... and follow it, right? (I chose this little gem at allrecipes.com. They call it Classic Tiramisu. I mean, 481 reviewers can't be wrong, right? Right??)
It's that "follow" business that gets me every time. It's not that I don't intend to do as I'm instructed. In fact, when it comes to some dishes, I'm a spectacular cook. Intuitive, loosely-put together dishes that don't require much any precision? Yea, I've got you covered. Your whole dinner, just me by myself.
Then tonight, I decided to make tiramisu. First of all, after a workday as long as the one just behind me, followed by this huge dinner I had no business eating in the first place, then some errands. Yea, should have just come home and done some more work or tucked myself in with a nice book.
But that's not what I did. Did I happen to mention I've never before, in fact, prepared tiramisu from scratch? No? Well, I haven't. Sis used to make a mean tiramisu. But me, not so much.
So tonight my friend Katie and I got to it and I mention her here NOT because she's in any way responsible for the fiasco that ended up occurring, but because if it weren't for her helping me handle all the details, God only knows how it would have turned out.
Things were going so well, too. I'd turned the heavy whipping cream into these glorious peaks of whipped deliciousness. Katie had stirred the parts that needed to be stirred over the double boiler setup. Then I'd stirred in the mascarpone cheese... It's what happened next that plunged us to the depths of kitchen pitifulness. Us, me. Whatever. Yea, me. After the fact, about the time I noticed it was turning to soup, not becoming thicker, it occurred to me what I'd done. I was supposed to "gently fold" those two mixtures together. And there shouldn't have been any difficulty remembering that. I must have read the recipe 82 times while I was working. I think I just got so excited by the Kitchen Aid mixer standing there asking me to play with it.
Don't think I haven't gone ahead and combined the whole business, anyway. I'm gonna' have me some yummy Italian dessert, don't even doubt it. Even called for a phone consultation with the friend I refer to as "my own personal chef." The guy I call for, well, just such times as these. When I screw something up and can't figure out what to do next, this guy can sometimes get me out of a bind. Culinary degrees and years running kitchens makes him more qualified than me; I find it's a handy number to have on speed dial. (When we were dating a few years ago, I would say, "Why don't you ever let ME cook???" to which he would respond, "Well, it's because you've been known to burn grilled cheese! And nobody messes THAT up!" Touché. To his credit, he didn't give me grief tonight. I think he just fails to be surprised anymore.)
At any rate, in a little while, we're going to see what the fridge has been able to do about my little fiasco. My little expensive fiasco. I present to you: tiramisoup!