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I was flipping through the pages of one of my recipe books when this recipe showed up; I was so intrigued by such a twist to a more common Tiramisù recipe; however the more I read the recipe the less I understood its name as  Stracchino, also known as crescenza, is a type of Italian cow’s-milk cheese, typical of Lombardy, Piedmont, and Veneto. It is normally square in form.

Therefore, considering there is no such cheese in this recipe, the squared shape must have given the name to this delicious dessert, typical of the Parma area.

  • 3 eggs (separated)
  • 250 gr mascarpone cheese
  • 3 packets lady’s finger biscuit
  • 1/8 cup Grand Marnier
  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 1/3 cup chocolate chips
  • 1 cup strong coffee (4 tsp instant coffee), unsweetened
  • 3 Tbsp caster sugar
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp dark unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 250ml whipped cream

Beat the egg yolks to a foam with 1 Tbsp sugar, add the mascarpone and mix thoroughly to obtain a smooth cream; set aside. Beat the egg whites with the remaining sugar, to a firm consistency. Mix the egg whites to the mascarpone cream. Divide the cream in two separate bowls.

Chop the almonds coarsely. Sieve the cocoa powder in one of the bowls, add the almonds and mix well. In the other bowl, add the chocolate chips to the cream and mix well.

In a shallow dish, transfer the coffee, add the Grand Marnier and, optional, a little icing sugar.

Line a loaf pan with wet parchment paper. Dip each biscuit in the coffee, quickly remove it (lady’s finger get easily soggy) and line in the loaf pan. Line biscuits on the sides as well (see pic.)

Spoon the cocoa/almond cream, top it with the chocolate chips cream. Dip the biscuits in the coffee again and cover the whole loaf.

Transfer to the fridge for at least 3 hours (cover with cling).

Serve, sliced, dusted with a little cocoa and a dollop of whipped cream.