The ethereal Italian dessert sauce zabaglione (known in French as sabayon) consists of egg yolks beaten with sugar and the Sicilian fortified dessert wine Marsala. Steeping vanilla seeds in the Marsala adds lovely flavor; folding in whipped cream increases the decadence factor.
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1 cup Marsala
1 cup sugar
1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
1 dozen large egg yolks
1 cup heavy cream
2 1/2 cups brandied cherries or Amaretto cherries
5 cups raspberries
How to Make It
In a small saucepan, whisk the Marsala with the sugar and vanilla bean seeds and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat.
Meanwhile, bring a medium saucepan of water to a simmer; turn the heat to moderately low. Fill a large bowl with ice water. In a large stainless steel bowl, whisk or beat the egg yolks at low speed to break them up. Gradually add the hot Marsala mixture and beat until smooth.
Set the bowl over the simmering water. Beat the egg yolk mixture until it is hot and foamy and leaves a ribbon trail when the beaters are lifted, about 10 minutes. Don't cook the zabaglione for too long, or it will curdle. Transfer the bowl to the ice water bath and let stand, whisking the zabaglione occasionally, until cooled. Cover and refrigerate for about 1 hour, until thoroughly chilled.
In another large stainless steel bowl, whip the cream to form firm peaks. Fold the whipped cream into the chilled zabaglione. Spoon the cherries into rocks glasses or bowls. Top with the zabaglione, garnish with the raspberries and serve.
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