During our last year summer escape in Europe, my sister in law made us one evening this delicious dessert. She is half Italian and she loves her mascarpone, Parmesan and tomato pasta, risotto alla Milanese, limoncello, Cantuccini cookies and tiramisu. So does my brother, and so do I. It’s not bad to have a sister in law like her (and by the way – she is lovely too!) This dessert is simple, easy to prepare upfront, looks festive and I’m sure everybody will like it. You can use limoncello or orange liquor, and for children and non alcohol drinkers just use fresh lemon or orange juice instead.
250 gram strawberries, in slices
250 ml mascarpone
100 ml yoghurt
8-10 Cantuccini (Italian biscotti) cookies, or Lady Fingers, crumbled
vanilla pod, scrape out the seeds
1/2 orange, the peel, finely chopped
dash of limoncello or orange liqueur (or the juice of half a lemon/orange when you prefer no alcohol)
handful of fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
50 gram fine sugar (or icing sugar)
40 gram almond flakes, dry roasted (or just some extra of the cookie crumble)
half a strawberry per person, for serving (without the marinade)
1 small munt leaf per person extra, for serving
Marinate 1-2 hours upfront your strawberries in the limoncello or orange liquor, add the chopped mint leaves and a tablespoon of the icing sugar (or fine sugar).
Mix your mascarpone with yoghurt, add the rest of the sugar (less or more to taste). You can also skip the sugar and add some (homemade?!) strawberry jam to the mascarpone-yoghurt mixture instead.
Add the orange zest and the seeds of the vanilla pod. Mix all together and taste.
Crumble your cookies in a mortar (or just by hand).
Take serving glasses and scoop in first some of the cookie crumble and (optional) an extra dash of limoncello/orange liquor, then a layer of the mascarpone-yoghurt mixture, the marinated strawberries, then the cookies again and finish off with a layer of the mascarpone. Place in the fridge for an hour (or more) to set.
Take your desserts out of the fridge about 20 minutes before serving. Add some dry roasted almond flakes (or more cookie crumble), together with half a strawberry and a munt leaf for serving.