Tiramisu is my preferred dessert when dining at an Italian restaurant because I've always thought it would be too much work to make at home. How wrong I was! The eggy cream takes a few minutes to whisk but the assembly is easy and fun too. I made this for no other reason except to satisfy my gluttony. This batch will happily feed a crowd or just one for several nights if you're home alone. No special occasion needed for tiramisu - just because.

4 egg yolks, at room temperature
100 g caster sugar
270 g mascarpone, at room temperature
270 g cream, cold
1/2 tsp vanilla extract or paste
1 1/2 c strong espresso, cooled (decaf is optional; sub half with coffee liqueur or kahlua if desired)
24 lady finger/savoiardi sponge biscuits
Cocoa for dusting
Loaf tin that’s big enough to fit 8 sponge fingers in a row or a decent-sized bowl

Lightly whisk the egg yolks and sugar in a heatproof bowl. Place bowl over a saucepan with simmering water. Whisk the mixture constantly for around 10 minutes until it’s thick and pale and the sugar has fully dissolved. Test it by rubbing a smidgen between your fingers – it should be completely smooth.
Remove from the heat and let cool for a few minutes before folding in the mascarpone. Leave to cool while you whip the cream.
Whip the cream and vanilla until soft peaks form then gently fold into the egg mixture.
Pour the coffee into a shallow bowl. Dunk 8 sponges in the coffee for 1 second only and arrange a layer at the bottom of your tin/bowl.
Cover with a third of the filling, making sure to spread it to the edges of your tin. Dust with cocoa powder.
Repeat twice more with another 8 sponges, spreading another third of filling on top. Don’t dust the very top with cocoa just yet.
Cover and chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours. When ready to serve, dust the top generously with cocoa powder.