House Reno

We’ve decided to bite the bullet and find a contractor to rip up our main floor in the hopes of taking down two small walls that form our current tiny kitchen, scrape our popcorn ceilings, lay down some new flooring, and give us a kitchen island and some companion cupboards, a new electrical panel and a level floor. Tall order, I know.

Still waiting on the second quote. Let’s hope it’s not as shocking as the first one. We live in a townhouse, a garden home. The quote was missing stuff and was for, after taxes, just over $100K.

LOL. Hahaha — no.

The second contractor asked me what finishes I was thinking about, and honestly I had no clear vision at that point, but that was a week ago. A lot of inspiration (and Pinspiration) has been happening since. The husband and I have different tastes in a lot of things, but I think I lucked out and found something even he likes enough to pay for.

*fingers crossed*


Tiramisu Close Up

The hardest part of making tiramisu for me is parting with so much money for the mascarpone. It’s costs a fortune! Years ago, I found a little hack by Gemma over @biggerbolderbaking that allows me to make a fake mascarpone (that I now call fascarpone) that saves a LOT of money. Get your big girl panties on, ladies, and let’s get assembling!

The base is comprised of however many lady fingers you can manage to fit into each layer times two or three layers, breaking fingers in half if you have to, dipped in strong coffee. (Depending on the pan I use, I can make up to three layers using a bread loaf pan, or two layers using a 9″x9″ square pan.) It’s not an exact science, so if you run out of the coffee/liquor mix, just make a bit more until all of the fingers get a quick soak.



20-30 Lady Fingers

1 C Strong Coffee Brew, room temperature (or cooled down hot chocolate)

1 tbsp Amaretto

The DIY Fascarpone is a two-step process. Here’s how to do it. (FYI: It’s probably best not to ever show this information to any actual Italians if you want any peace of mind.)


1C 35% Cream

1/3 C Sugar (white or superfine icing)
1 tsp Vanilla (this is the time to bust open the expensive stuff)

Using a whisk attachment in a mixer or a hand beater, whip this cream mixture on medium speed for about 5-8 mins, until the cream starts to thicken up. Then bump it to full speed for another 2-3 mins to incorporate a lot of air allowing the cream to fluff up.

Scrape the finished whipped cream into another mixing bowl. Set aside while assembling the second cream mixture into the used mixer bowl. No need to clean it out first.


6oz/168g Cream Cheese, room temp (small cubes speed up the temp change)

2 Tbsp Sour Cream (if you’re not using full fat, why are you even making this dessert?!)

3 Tbsp 35% Cream

Using a paddle attachment in a mixer or a hand beater, cream this mixture to a smooth consistency. You really don’t want any cream cheese lumps. Drop heaping spoonful of this mixture into the whipped cream bowl, and fold it in so the whipped cream thins out a bit. Add the rest and mix to incorporate both only.

Drop each lady finger into a shallow dish with the coffee mixture and quickly roll it over a full rotation. Immediately place each soaked finger into the loaf pan or the glass dish. When one layer of lady fingers is assembled, top it with a third of the fascarponey mixture. Smooth it out. Optional: dust the cream layer with coco powder or hot chocolate powder. I do this sometimes, but often I forget to do it. Oh, well.

Continue with more of the same two layers until you reach the top of the pan with fascarponey. Top that with either coco or hot chocolate powder. Cover and let the dish set itself up in the fridge.


To be honest, you only need ten minutes for the lady finger to soften up from all of the moisture you rolled them around in and even more moisture from the cream mixture before you can dive in, but the longer it sits chilling the better it ends up tasting if you ask me. So, yeah – quick dessert for sure when you need something nice at a moment’s notice. Even a pan slapped together quickly can produce a lovely-to-eat tiramisu on a weeknight.

I’ve never tasted a shitty tiramisu. I simply refuse to believe one exists. And this speedy hacked version is no different. It’s is foolproof. If you find a way to screw it up, I need to be the first person you tell. And I will need a full explanation of just how you did it. Deal?

BWT, this is the typical portion of every pan of Tiramisu I make that the husband leaves for me. Every.single.time. I should just start making two pans instead of one.