Sponge Cake (See Recipe Instructions for Ladyfingers)
Berry Juice Dip
1lbstrawberrieshulled, plus more for garnish
6ozraspberriesplus more for garnish
6ozblackberriesplus more for garnish
1pint blueberriesplus more for garnish
4mint leaveschopped, optional
3tablespoonslemon juicefrom 1 large lemon
1/4cupsweet marsala wine
1/4cupblackberry brandyor brandy
2cupssweetened whipped cream
Bake the Sponge Cake (Skip if Using Ladyfingers)
Preheat an oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a half-sheet pan and line it with parchment paper. Set this aside.
In a large mixing bowl, whip the whites to stiff peaks on high speed using an electric mixer.In a separate stainless steel bowl, whip the yolks and sugar together on high speed until the beaters leave ribbons in the surface of the eggs. The eggs should be light, lemony-yellow when you're done.
Sift half of the cake flour onto the surface of the egg yolks. Gently fold the flour into the yolks using a rubber spatula. Once the flour is folded in, fold in half of the whites. Repeat this process- GENTLY- with the remaining flour and egg whites.
Use an offset spatula to evenly spread the batter into the prepare sheet pan. Gently rap the the sheet pan on the counter to dispel any air bubbles.Bake the sponge for 15 minutes, or it pulls away from the sides of the sheet pan and toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool for 5 minutes before transferring it to a cooling rack. Remove the paper and leave the cake to cool completely.
Macerate the Fruit and Prepare the Berry Dip
In a mixing bowl combine the berries, sugar, and chopped mint. Use a potato masher or muddler, to partially mash berries.
Allow the berry mixture to sit at room temperature for 15-20 minutes*. Once the berries have released their liquids, strain the juice into a separate bowl. Use a rubber spatula to press out as much juice as possible from the berries.
Reserve one cup of the berries for adding to the tiramisu later. Store the remaining berries in the fridge for up to 2 days to stir into parfaits or blend in smoothies. Stir the lemon juice into the berry liquid. Set aside.
Mix the Berry Sabayon
In a heat-safe mixing bowl beat the egg yolks, sugar, sweet marsala, and blackberry brandy together. Place the bowl over a double-boiler, or a saucepan filled with a 1 1/2 cups of water. Bring the water in the bottom pot to a simmer.Heat the sabayon in the double-boiler, stirring the mixture continually. Make sure to scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally so the sabayon on the sides doesn't curdle.
Once the sabayon goes from a chestnut brown color to a thick, lemony-yellow color remove it from the heat, this should take 3-4 minutes. The sabayon will have thickened and the whisk will leave a ribbon-like trail in the cooked sabayon.
Allow the sabayon to room temperature before covering the bowl with plastic wrap. Refrigerate the mixture until completely chilled- anywhere from 3-4 hours, but preferably overnight.
Combine the Sabayon and Mascarpone
Once the sabayon is cold, blend the mascarpone on low speed for 1 minute, or until smooth.Add a quarter of the chilled sabayon to the cheese and blend on low speed for a few seconds.
Add the rest of the sabayon to the mascarpone in the bowl and blend on low until it is fully blended. Don't whip the mascarpone or it will curdle. You can also use your rubber spatula to hand-fold it.
Cover the mascarpone bowl and refrigerate it, or use it right away to assemble the Berry Tiramisu.
Assemble and Decorate the Berry Tiramisu
Use a 9x13 baking dish in which to assemble your Berry Tiramisu.Using store bought ladyfingers, of which you'll need 30: dip each cookie into the berry juice mixture and arrange them in a single layer in the bottom of the baking dish. Break up the cookies as needed to fit them into the corner section of the baking dish.To assemble using the baked sponge cake: Use the bottom of your baking dish as a template to cut the sponge cake into two sheets of equal sizes. Press one of the sponge sheets into the bottom of the baking dish. Pour half of the berry juice onto the surface of the sponge and allow it to soak in for 3-4 minutes.
Spoon half of the mascarpone cream onto the ladyfingers. Use an offset spatula to spread the cream into an even layer, so that it's completely covering the ladyfingers.Take a cup of the reserved berries and spread them onto the surface of the mascarpone cream.
Now repeat the cake/ladyfinger layer. It's okay to arrange the lady fingers while they're still dripping. Discard the rest of the berry juice or strain it to use in cocktails. If you're using sponge cake, pour the remaining berry juice over this second layer.
Spread the remaining mascarpone cream over the cake in an even layer.Top the mascarpone with sweetened whipped cream and fresh berries, if desired.
This dessert will keep for up to two days in the fridge.
Allow the berry tiramisu to sit in the fridge for at least 2 hours before serving. Overnight is ideal, but you need at least 2 hours to make sure the ladyfingers have soaked up as much of that berry juice as possible.
This dessert will keep for 2 days in the fridge. Once cut, be sure to wrap the dish in plastic to keep it from drying out.
*Macerating the berries can be done a day or two in advance. Be sure to keep them covered and refrigerated if you plan to leave them for more than three hours.