Today I’m introducing a dessert that’s very italian.It’s called zabbaione (sabayon in English) and it’s practically eggnog (but better) and it’s less dangerous for your health because you cook it–eggnog is made with raw eggs, so there’s always a risk of catching salmonella from it. But anyway, let’s stop it with the Doctor House episode and move on to the good part of this blog post.
Now, there are many recipes for zabbaione all over the world wide web, but I carry the one that has been taught to me by my mother. It has to be said, my mother is a terrible baker because she doesn’t get that you have to weigh your ingredients when baking because it’s not a Disney cartoon where you just whistle and birds and squirrels from the woods come sprinkling handful of random things and just stir it to get a magic potion that will turn you into a dragon. Or something. That’s why her recipe is valid, although it’s kind of…er, not exactly scientific.
So, here’s how you make it. You’ll need:
- Four egg yolks
- Four tpbs of sugar (which is about 40g)
- Marsala, or any other sweet wine. Preferably marsala though.
Heat some water in a large pan. In a heatproof recipient that will then fit into the said large pan, beat the eggs and the sugar together and add the marsala; my mother’s trick for dosing the marsala is: fill one half eggshell with marsala for every egg that’s been used; in this case, that’s four half eggshells. If you think that my mother’s method is weird (I do), just fill about half a glass with marsala and pour it in the egg / sugar mixture. Put the recipient over the boiling water and stir, stir, stir, stir. You have to stir until your arms fall off and you feel like screaming–and when that happens, keep stirring. The zabbaione has to become really creamy and thick.
If you’re planning to use it straight away, don’t let it cool–it’s served caliente. I made a little cup topping the zabbaione with frozen berries and putting some melted chocolate on the bottom. Otherwise, eat it with some simple cookies–look for italian ones, preferably–but any type of butter cookie works, really.