Zabaglione is an creamy and foamy Italian dessert. The word comes from the Neapolitan word zapillare, which means "to foam". It is not uncommon to see the French version sabayon, which can either mean the same as zabaglione, or it can refer to a champagne-based mousseline usually served to fish.

The basic ingredients in zabaglione are

  • egg yolks
  • sugar
  • wine

These are then whipped together while being heated a bit. The result is a an almost ridiculusly well-tasting fluffy dessert.

Zabaglione can be made from dry white wines such as Asti or champagne, sweet white wines such as Sauternes and Muscat, fortified wines such as madeira and marsala, port wine or even a mix of white wine and liqueur or spirits. As an added taste, one may add flavor through lemon, vanilla, cocoa etc.

Even though the ingredients are few, the preparation does require some effort. The egg yolks must not coagulate when they thicken, so it is quite important to keep whisking while the heat is applied.

A basic recipe:

Put 5 egg yolks in a basin. If desired, add extra taste in the form of lemon zest from half a lemon and some powdered vanilla (or essence in some form), or both. Add 3/4 cup sugar. Whisk together until it gets rich and thick and a bit pale in the color. Put the basin in a hot water bath, or rather over one. Add 1 1/2 cups of white wine of desired kind, and continue to whisk until it becomes frothy. Serve on cold or frosted dishes.

Reference: Larousse Gastronomique