This Italian Zabaione is creamy and rich. Made with just 3 ingredients, egg yolks, sugar and Marsala wine. The Italian answer to Egg Nog. The perfect addition to the Holiday Season.
This is a very simple recipe but needs complete hands on and never left to make on it’s own. The easiest way to make it is with beaters but a strong arm and a whisk will work also.
What is the difference between Zabaione and Eggnog?
Both are typical of the holiday season. Zabaione is more of a creamy dessert, with the main ingredients of egg yolks, sugar and Marsala, whereas Eggnog is a drink, that is made with milk, eggs, sugar and nutmeg and or other spices, it can be made with or with alcohol such as Rum, Brandy or Bourbon.
- Egg yolks
- Sugar – granulated sugar or a fine granulated sugar
What is it?
Zabaione, also called Zabaglione and the French name Sabayon. In Italy the most common name is Zabaione.
It is a sweet cream, a close cousin of the Italian Pastry cream, that is prepared with egg yolks, beaten with sugar, marsala or another type of sweet liqueur and then cooked in a bain-marie.
How to make Zabaione
In a medium bowl with electric hand beaters beat the egg yolks and sugar until smooth and pale yellow (and sugar has dissolved), add the Marsala wine and beat to combine for approximately 1 minute.
Place the bowl over a small pot of simmering hot water over low heat (make sure the bowl is not touching the water) continue beating until you reach the desired thickness, approximately 10-15 minutes.
Pour into dessert glasses or bowls, serve immediately or at room temperature. Sprinkle with cocoa, shaved chocolate or even fresh berries.
What is Marsala wine
Marsala wine is a fortified wine that is produced only in Sicily and in particular in the city of Marsala. Marsala is commonly used for cooking and to prepare caramelized sauces and desserts.
What can I substitute for Marsala wine?
Traditionally Zabaione is made with Marsala, but you can use Madeira, Sherry, Port or any other sweet wine. It is recommended that you use a dry wine, that is not too sweet, if you do use a sweet wine then you should cut back a bit on the sugar. Since Marsala is a big part of the dessert then be sure to choose a good quality brand.
Can it be made in advance?
It is always best served warm or room temperature but it will keep wrapped tightly in plastic wrap or in an airtight container for up to 3-4 days in the fridge.
How to store it
It should be stored in the fridge in an airtight container or the glasses or dishes covered tightly in plastic wrap. It will keep for up to 3-4 days in the fridge. Before serving it is best to whisk it together for a minute or two.
If you are looking for a creamy Italian dessert, I hope you give this Zabaione a try and let me know. Enjoy!
More Easy Italian Desserts
Authentic Italian Zabaione
- 2 egg yolks
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons Marsala wine
- In a medium bowl with an electric hand beaters beat the egg yolks and sugar until smooth and pale yellow (and sugar has dissolved) approximately 2-3 minutes, add the Marsala wine and beat to combine for approximately 1 minute.
- Place the bowl over a small pot of simmering hot water over low heat (make sure the bowl is not touching the water) continue beating until you reach the desired thickness, approximately 10-15 minutes.
- Pour into dessert glasses or bowls, serve immediately or at room temperature. Sprinkle with cocoa, shaved chocolate or even fresh berries. Enjoy!