If tiramisu is too runny, it looks like a disaster at first. And indeed it is a challenge to save the melted dessert – but it is not impossible.
A night in the fridge often helps to thicken the tiramisu. But adding mascarpone, whipped cream, gelatine or agar gar or icing sugar can also help to make the cream a little firmer.
You can find out how it all works in this article. Let’s start by finding the cause.
3 reasons why tiramisu is too runny
The cream for a tiramisu consists of mascarpone, sugar and, depending on the recipe, eggs and/or cream. The mascarpone is the most important ingredient and often the reason for a liquid tiramisu.
Beat mascapone over
What a lot of people don’t know: You can “skip” mascapone. If it’s whipped too long and too hard, it will curdle.
The water separates from the curd and creates a melted cream. The result is a watery, crumbly consistency.
But mascapone isn’t the only thing that can go wrong when whipped up.
Cream not whipped properly
Even the cream has its pitfalls. Because if cream is not whipped long enough, it can result in a tiramisu that is too runny.
Because only with stiff cream your tiramisu develops enough firmness to keep for a long time. If you stir mascarpone into cream that is too thin, it will collapse.
Tip: Here you can find out what you can do if cream does not stiffen.
Finally, the fault can also lie in the biscuits that are placed between the layers of mascarpone. They are often soaked in a mixture of coffee and amaretto, in non-alcoholic or coffee-free recipes also in cocoa or orange juice.
But if you’re too generous with the coffee, you might drown the biscuits and make for a soggy tiramisu. “Soaking” doesn’t mean immersing the biscuit in the liquid – it will make them soak.
Instead, just pour 2-3 teaspoons of coffee over the cookies. The biscuits later draw the rest of the liquid they need from the mascarpone cream, which in turn thickens it.
Now you know why tiramisu is too runny. Next, it’s important to understand when tiramisu sets. Because what might look like an accident could easily become solid on its own.
When does tiramisu become firm?
The basis for the firmness of any tiramisu is the refrigerator. Here the dessert is chilled for several hours, causing the cream to solidify.
In addition, the ladyfingers need time to really absorb the moisture and flavor of the cream, coffee and amaretto.
However, the firmness of the tiramisu is not only due to the cold, but also depends on the correct preparation.
The various components of the cream should not be roughly beaten together with the mixer, which could cause them to collapse again.
Instead, they have to be carefully folded in one by one. You can take your time for that. Better to be on the safe side than to regret it later and end up with a messy tiramisu.
Does tiramisu still set in the fridge?
You can put not only successful, but also liquid tiramisu in the fridge. This is where both the mascarpone and the cream will “set”, giving the cream a firmer consistency. Liquid tiramisu may not be completely firm, but it will at least thicken.
But this only works if you have a little time available, because the tiramisu should be in the fridge for at least six hours. In fact, it’s best if chilled for a whole night.
Opinions differ when it comes to tiramisu with or without an egg. But maybe there is magic behind the egg, why some tiramisu don’t set?
Is there a difference in tiramisu with or without an egg?
Many people use egg yolks in tiramisu to make the cream smoother. However, this can also make it too liquid. In this case it helps to rely on beaten egg whites. Add a pinch of salt to the egg whites and beat them with a mixer until stiff.
You can then mix the whipped cream with the mascarpone. It is important not to use a blender – this could cause the snow to collapse again. Instead, use a whisk and gently fold in the beaten egg whites.
Caution: Make sure that no egg yolk gets into the egg whites. As a result, it does not become really stiff or could collapse again afterwards. This can also lead to your tiramisu not setting properly.
Tip: Here you can find out how egg whites become stiff. And how you can still save a little egg yolk in the egg white.
Now let’s see what tricks you can use to thicken the tiramisu cream.
How to make tiramisu cream firmer?
If the tiramisu isn’t already assembled, you can try to drain the excess liquid from the cream.
A stay in the fridge will also do the cream good. If that doesn’t work, add a little more mascarpone to the cream. It is comparatively firm and thickens the mixture.
If you don’t have any more mascarpone on hand, you can also add gelatine/agartine, whipped cream or icing sugar to give the mixture more consistency.
Let’s now look at how these solutions work in detail.
Can you save tiramisu cream with whipped cream?
Under certain circumstances this can work. Of course, the cream stiffener is best in whipped cream, which it gives support.
If you use it afterwards and whip the cream with it, it can become firm – but it can also happen that the mascarpone curdles as a result of the further beating.
Working with whipped cream is a tightrope walk when making tiramisu.
Is it possible to save tiramisu cream with agar agar or gelatin?
Yes, that should work. To do this, simply place tasteless gelatine leaves in warm water and let them swell there, then add them to the mixture of mascarpone and cream. Gelatine absorbs the moisture and makes the cream firmer.
Of course, gelatine is not vegetarian. So you can work well here with Agar Agar. To do this, you have to boil agar agar with a little liquid. Then you first put the agar agar in a small part of the mass and stir it quickly and well.
Because if you put agar agar directly into the cold mass, it would harden too quickly. This creates lumps.
Then add the partial mass back to the rest and stir well again. If lumps form, you can press the mass through a sieve.
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Does Freezing Too Liquid Tiramisu Help?
Liquid tiramisu can in principle be frozen, but once defrosted it probably won’t look as pretty as a tiramisu that was cut from the start. Due to the freezing and reheating, the biscuits in particular quickly become mushy.
However, one option would be to place the tiramisu in portions in the freezer and serve it later as a semi-frozen parfait. This is great refreshment, especially in summer.
What to do if ready-made tiramisu does not set?
If the tiramisu does not set despite all your efforts, the only option is to freeze it. If you don’t want to throw it away, you can try making something new out of the liquid tiramisu.
For example, you can crush the biscuits and use them together with the mascarpone cream as part of a cake cream.
Alternatively, you can turn the tiramisu into a glass dessert. As you rearrange the tiramisu, feel free to add a few more biscuits to soak up more of the liquid.
Conclusion: save liquid tiramisu
Tiramisu can become liquid for a variety of reasons. So it can happen that mascarpone that has been beaten too much curdles or that the cream does not set properly.
Sometimes tiramisu also becomes runny because there is too much amaretto in the cream or too much liquid was added to the ladyfingers.
You can try to save a liquid cream by putting it in the fridge, overnight if necessary. If that doesn’t help, or if you’re short on time, try adding whipped cream, gelatin, or powdered sugar to give the cream more consistency.
If none of these options work, freeze your tiramisu – you can serve it semi-frozen and it will still taste great.