This traditional Italian dessert gets a unique flavor twist with the addition of maple syrup.

125 ml (1/2 cup) hot espresso coffee

375 ml (1 1/2 cups) maple syrup

125 ml (1/2 cup) liqueur (such as Triple Sec or Amaretto)

125 ml (1/2 cup) raisins

125 ml (1/2 cup) dried cranberries

6 eggs, separated

2 475-g tubs of mascarpone cheese, at room temperature

2 ml (1/2 tsp) vanilla extract

12 ladyfinger cookies, broken in half

125 ml (1/2 cup) walnuts, grilled and chopped (optional)

60 ml (1/4 cup) cocoa powder

60 ml (1/4 cup) maple sugar (or maple flakes)

In a bowl, mix together the espresso and 125 ml (1/2 cup) of the maple syrup, then add the liqueur and dried fruit. Set aside.

In a large bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form.

In another large bowl, beat the mascarpone, egg yolks, vanilla and remaining maple syrup. Then, carefully fold into the egg whites using a spatula.

Place 6 cookies in the bottom of a 3-l (12-cup) glass dish, then pour half of the dried fruit and coffee mixture evenly over the top. Sprinkle half of the nuts and spread half the mascarpone filling on top. Repeat to create a second layer. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours, then sprinkle with cocoa and maple sugar before serving.

Makes 12 servings.

Source: Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers