Rose, Aniseed & Chai Tea Tiramisu – published in Hello!Pakistan


Pakistani’s adore Western food, especially desserts so hence I grew up with always experimenting with such sweets – But once I left Pakistan, I realised that I craved Pakistani desserts more, which has lead me to reinvent many.

However a wild obsession for everything Italian lead me to create a recipe which brings my favourite Italian dessert, Tiramisu, to perfect unite with the hauntingly exotic flavours of Pakistani desserts.  The base of the recipe is what you would expect in a Tiramisu, mascarpone cheese and eggs but there is no coffee, no chocolate – instead you are greeted with what someone eating this dessert once said, the true taste of Pakistan. My Desi twist is the use of rosewater, aniseed (saunf) and cardamom. These are flavours we usually find in most Pakistani desserts, but hardly ever in a Western ones. Chai tea adds a different spicy flavour as opposed to the usual coffee one and the pink colour just looks pretty! These aromas and flavours marry well to create a sublime and unusual dessert that’s hard to resist!



Preparation time: 30 – 40 minutes

Refrigeration time: 7-8 hours, preferably overnight

Serves: makes about 4-6 cocktail glasses or dessert cups or is enough for a large 6×6 casserole dish (feeds about 4-6 people)

Utensils and equipment:

A 6×6 1 ½ deep casserole dish or 4-6 cocktail glasses or desserts cups
Electric whisk
3 plastic mixing bowls
Rubber spatula

Main ingredients:
3 large free-range egg yolks
25g caster sugar
250g mascarpone cheese
1 large egg white
½ packet of a 175g pack ladyfingers / sponge biscuits

Flavouring and tea:
200ml brewed Chai tea (using teabags)
1 tsp ground Aniseed
1 tsp ground cardamom
½ tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp Rose essence or 1 tbsp Rosewater
a few drops of pink food colour

1 tbsp roughly chopped pistachios
Edible rose petals (optional)

Recipe published in Hello! Pakistan Oct 2012


  1. Using an electric beater, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar until the mixture is very pale, very thick and leaves a trail from the mixer when lifted.
  2. Next whisk in the mascarpone cheese, vanilla, ground cardamom and aniseed and ensure that the mixture is well combined. Now add the pink food colour, to create a light pink hue.
  3. Beat the egg whites, in a separate bowl, beat until stiff. Then careful and gently fold the stiff egg whites into the mascarpone mixture.
  4. Lay about half the ladyfinger / sponge biscuits in a bowl and pour over the brewed Chai tea. Then careful place each soaked biscuit in the bottom of the serving dish or bowl. Pour over half the mascarpone mixture and then repeat the layers with the rest of the fingers.
  5. Sprinkle chopped pistachios, edible rose petals (if desired) and any remaining aniseed and cardamom powder and with Clingfilm and put in the fridge to set for at least 8 hours or overnight. Serve cold.





Basic tiramisu recipe ingredients inspired by Woman and Home magazine


  1. Nasrah says

    Is it safe to use raw eggs…..? is there another method to get this taste and look without using raw eggs…..I am a bit worried to give foods with raw egg recipes.

    • says

      hi there – if you are nervous of using raw eggs I can suggest either you buy pasteurised eggs, or use the yolks and sugar over a bain-marie and make a sabayon. i.e. under a bowl of boiling water in a saucepan, place a glass bowl that does not touch the water, keep on low heat, whisk the yolks constantly with the sugar until u get a ribbon like texture – substitute the egg white with heavy whipping cream.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *