Tiramisu is such a special treat, with whipped cream, ladyfingers, espresso and chocolate flavors, that adorning it seems like the right thing to do -- decorations add excitement and drama to the dessert. Keep the decorations modest if you like, or go all out with ingredients and techniques. Opt for traditional flavors in your decorations, mimicking the flavors of chocolate and coffee, or add nontraditional ingredients that still pair well with the tiramisu's flavor.
Simple Yet Elegant
Simple decorations add one more element to the tiramisu but they don't detract from the dessert itself. A drizzle of dark chocolate or caramel over the top of the tiramisu and around the edges of the plate add a finishing touch. A few chocolate curls make a slightly more elaborate topping -- make them by peeling a block of chocolate with a vegetable peeper. Or, lay a stencil snowflake over the cocoa powder on top of the tiramisu and sprinkle powdered sugar to form the design.
Over the Top
Special toppings for tiramisu add a celebratory note to special occasions. Insert chocolate leaves or flowers made from preformed molds into the top layer of the tiramisu, transforming it into a magnificent dessert spectacle. A design made from spun sugar has the same effect -- plate individual servings of tiramisu and either place a small spun sugar design on each piece or surround each piece entirely with a cloud of spun sugar.
Flavor Upon Flavor
Use the flavors of the tiramisu as an inspiration for your decorations. For example, add a few chocolate covered coffee beans as a topping or candied hazelnuts, pecans or walnuts, whose flavors pair well with the coffee and chocolate flavors in the tiramisu. Other flavors that work with coffee and chocolate include lemon, orange and lime. Garnish the tiramisu with pieces of candied zest from those fruits with a sprinkling of powdered sugar to finish.
Out of the Mold
For nontraditional decorations, add fruit, either candied or plain. Fruits that pair well with tiramisu flavors include bananas, cherries, pears or oranges. Either place one perfect slice of fruit on top of each piece of tiramisu, or place a grouping of three or five pieces -- uneven numbers of items have a greater visual appeal than even numbers. Other nontraditional decorations include white chocolate curls and colored, decorative candies called dragees.
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