Thursday, March 27, 2014

My Favorite Chocolate Mousse

Chocolate mouse is definitely one of my top 5 favorite desserts. While I'm not really a big chocolate fan, I just love mousse.  Whenever it's on a menu, you know what I'm going to order.  When I was planning my Christmas dinner menu, I decided it would be perfect.  It creamy and rich, but light enough that it doesn't weigh you down after a big meal.  

Now, I didn't blog about it during Christmas because I was overwhelmed making Beef Wellington for the first time, but last weekend I had a cast party at my house, and because I was on Spring Break, I thought the mousse would be a fun addition!  It is really pretty simple to make and aside from the time it takes to set, it's not time consuming either.  

This recipe is from my favorite, Mark Bittman (How to Cook Everything)

You will need:

2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
4 oz. really good bittersweet or semi sweet chocolate broken up (I used Guittard) 
3 eggs - seperated
1/4 c. sugar (divided into two parts)
1/2 c. cream
1 Tsp. vanilla extract (The original memory calls for 1/2 tsp, but I like to add a little extra)

Start by bringing a small pot of boiling water and use a heat-safe bowl as a double boiler to melt the butter and chocolate.  I like to use a bowl big enough to hold all of the ingredients in the end because the biggest problem with this recipe is that it makes a lot of dishes.  Using a big bowl cuts down your dishes by one at least!  Keep stirring until it's melted and smooth.  Then put this chocolate mixture into the fridge to cool.  

While the chocolate is cooling, you can make the other two components.  First, you need to whip the egg whites.  I used my stand mixer, but you could use a hand mixer, or your very own muscles!  Combine the 3 egg whites and half the sugar in a bowl and whip them until you get soft peaks. Then put them in a separate bowl and set them aside.  

Then you need to whip the cream.  Again, I did this in the stand mixer, but I have done it by hand before.  Take the cream, the vanilla, and the remaining sugar and whip it together until you get soft peaks. 

Then you need to get the chocolate out of the fridge and start mixing it together.  Now, the key to this is to start slowly and not to over mix.  It is better to end up with ribbons of light and dark than to compromise the light, fluffy texture of the mousse!


Ok, so start by adding just a spoonful of the egg whites and carefully fold them into your chocolate. Once that is incorporated, you can fold in the rest of the egg whites.  Then fold in the whipped cream.  

   Now, I wish I had a beautiful picture of the finished product, complete with more whipped cream (which you make by just repeating the "whipped cream" stage of the mousse, but we scarfed it down so quickly that I didn't get a chance to take a good shot.  Maybe next time! 

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