The name for the renowned Italian dessert Tiramisu comes from the Italian expression meaning "pick me up." However, it would have proven an extremely challenging task to pick up the giant tiramisu unveiled at the Piazzagrande (Italy) shopping centre in June.

Located near Venice in the town of Piove di Sacco, Piazzagrande decided to celebrate its 20 th anniversary by doing something very big – and very Italian – by working with pastry chefs from the supermarket Ipersimply and attempting a record title for the largest tiramisu.

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The tiramisu had to exceed the 1,075.92 kg (2,372 lb) monster made by France’s Chokogou and L'Essor du Grand Chocolat in 2009 in order to bring the title home to Italy.

A special scale had to be built in order to measure the tiramisu and the 16,000 people present waited in suspense for the final weigh-in. Guests were thrilled when the official Guinness World Records adjudicator announced that the tiramisu weighed an enormous 1,285 kg (2,832 lb), consequently breaking the previous record with ease.

The statistics behind the record-breaking treat are mind-boggling. In addition to the record weight, Piazzagrande's dessert measured 13.98 m (45 ft 10 in) long and 2.72 m (8 ft 11 in) wide.

It took 24 continuous hours, 39,000 ladyfingers, 175 kg of mascarpone, 350 grams of sugar, 30 kg of cocoa and 300 kg of powdered eggs to break this record.

Nevertheless, organisers of the event wanted to make sure that high quality wasn’t sacrificed for size. The supermarket invited professional pastry chefs from Officina Giotto to guarantee the quality of the tiramisu.

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This record attempt also acted as a fundraiser for Officina Giotto – a pastry and catering enterprise which holds a workshop aimed at supporting the recovery of marginalized prison inmates and drug users. Its mission statement is to do so by showing them that they can change their lives through hard work.

Once the record was confirmed, the tiramisu was then handed out to the giant gathering in exchange for donations to the cause.

"With this great event, Piazzagrande combined its commercial element with a project that's profoundly social," said Filippo Lazzarin, Centre Manager.

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