If I asked you to name one Italian dessert , I guarantee the vast majority would say tiramisu. However, not everybody likes the coffee that the biscuits are traditionally soaked in, so my version – inspired by a trip to the cherry orchards of Castello, where Ciro and his family grow wonderful fruit – uses liqueur instead. If making this for children, just leave out the booze and cook the cherries in a little water.


  • 400g cherries, pitted and halved

  • 50g caster sugar

  • 4 tablespoons cherry or amaretto liqueur

  • 8 small madeleine cakes or sponge finger biscuits

  • 2 tablespoons chopped toasted nuts

  • For the mascarpone cream

  • 2 egg yolks

  • 2 tablespoons caster sugar

  • 250g mascarpone cheese

  • 2 tablespoons cherry or amaretto liqueur


  • 1.

    Heat the cherries, sugar and 2 tablespoons of the liqueur in a saucepan until the sugar has dissolved and the cherries are slightly softened and their skin starts to burst. Set aside to cool.

  • 2.

    For the mascarpone cream, whisk the egg yolks and sugar in a bowl until pale. Beat in the mascarpone and 2 tablespoons of the liqueur.

  • 3.

    Place a layer of cake in the bottom of 4 individual glasses. Spoon over a little of the remaining liqueur, then add a layer of the cooked cherries and their juices. Top with a layer of the mascarpone cream. Repeat the layering until you are nearly at the top of the glass, finishing with the cream.

  • 4.

    Sprinkle the top with chopped nuts and chill for 2 hours before serving.

Nutritional information

Nutritional analysis per serving (4 servings)

  • Energy 1202kj
  • Fat Total 58g
  • Saturated Fat 21g
  • Protein 20g
  • Carbohydrate 142g
  • Sugar 49g
  • Sodium 1405mg

Note: The information shown is Edamam's estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice.

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Extracted from GINO’S ITALIAN ECSAPE by Gino D’Acampo
Published by Hodder & Stoughton on 14th September 2013
Priced: £20
Pictures ©Matt Russell

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