Mix the cocoa and instant coffee together with a little hot water. The consistency should be "runny" but not watery. Next take the Marsala (I use Port, the real dish, Marsala) and pour it into a wide dish. Beat the cream until it is able to "stand on its own" (you take the spoon out but the indentation remains!) Using the lady fingers, find a serving dish that is deep enough to hold at least 3 biscuits stacked on top of each other. Now use the following steps, repeating until you have two (2) layers of biscuits in the bowl:
At this stage, I sometimes grate ordinary chocolate all over the top of the dish. Place in the refrigerator for a couple of hours, overnight is best! For children, you may omit the alcohol and use the juice that comes from a tin of peaches and you coul d add the peaches to the top of the biscuits.
Comments: My history of Italy is very sketchy, however, as I remember, there were the Greeks, then came the Romans, then the Greeks again with the Arberesh, and in between there was the Spanish/French connections -- who fought with the British (English)...
The story behind this recipe is that it was called Torta Inglese or Zuppa Inglese because it was a concoction made up by a Neapolitan chef for Lady Emma Hamilton. She was with Nelson (I think?) on the Bay of Naples. Legend has it that she was an alcohol ic -- a taste of the Torta Inglese will show you why a lover of alcoholic drinks would especially like this recipe. It is liberally laced with Marsala.
Only one ingredient in my recipe is different from the original ... I don't use Marscapone cheese. Enjoy!
Submitted by: Josephine Tedesco