October 16, 2010 by Sarah Gerdes
Perfect Chocolate Mousse
It’s only 11 am (PST), more than enough time to have the best tasting chocolate mousse for dessert tonight.
This recipe is the easiest, fastest and best mousse recipe I’ve concocted. While the original version is in The New Best Recipe cookbook, (page 973), I’ve made significant changes.
For mousse connisouers, if you prefer a dark-dark version, that’s heavy on the liquor and coffee, go with the original version (you have to buy the book!). I prefer something a bit less dark, since the ultra-dark chocolate gives me a headache. Also, call me kooky, but I’m also particular about the texture. Some mousse recipes make it super airy and fluffy-hence mousse. I, on the other hand, like a creamier texture, less air. Almost between a pudding and mousse.
By now you’re thinking I have more time than necessary on my hands, and have made far too many mousse recipes. Reality is that this takes less than 20 minutes, and impresses the heck out of guests, so I it’s my default dessert. Really.
As a side note: I’m a cookbook addict. I love to cook. Love cookbooks. Once I buy a cookbook (and it’s sub 200 pgs) I’ll go through each and every recipe, making most (save things I’m allergic to or despise). One of my pet peeves is that I close the book finding only a half-dozen I truly like. The New Best Recipe defies all odds. Not only have I found ways to improve my already-decent meatloaf through cooking techniques, but the smothered pork chop recipe is as divine as the chocolate mousse I based my recipe upon. The flan is outstanding, the roast–i could go on and on. This isn’t to say I don’t make a lot of changes in each one, because I do. But dollar for dollar, this is by far, the most superior, general cookbook I own. (if you have a friend/wife/sister who likes to cook, see if she/he has this book. If not, it’s an awesome gift. I bought for my sister, mom and cousin one year).
For an extra creamy chocolate mousse, fold in 1 cup of heavy cream that’s been whipped (instead of the ½ cup called for below). Make this mousse at least 2 hours before you wish to serve it to let the flavors develop, but serve within 24 hours, or the flavor and texture will deteriorate.
3 oz semisweet chocolate (Ghiradelli or better) chopped
4 tbs (1/2 stick) salted butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbs orange flavored liquor or light rum (this is optional. I use it only when I know the guests like liquor, but 99% of the time, I don’t put it in. It doesn’t affect the texture)
4 large eggs, separated (room temperature)
2 tbs sugar
½ cup chilled organic heavy cream (see my previous recipe blogs on the diff between organic heavy cream and reg under 9 cooking rules to live by)
Note: the original recipe calls for coffee, but I leave this out. I’ve found many guests either don’t like coffee or don’t like mocha/coffee flavor in the dessert. If you want to add it, substitute the 2 tbs alcohol for the pre-made coffee.
1. Melt the butter first, and then the chocolate in a double boiler (I use a round, metal dish above a small pan. This allows for better control)
2. Lower the heat, and add the salt and vanilla.
3. Whisk the yolks in one at a time. This is very important. You need to make sure that each is fully incorporated before adding the next. Set aside.
4. Stir the egg whites in a clean mixing bowl on high, 1-2 minutes.
5. Beat until soft peaks form (if the eggs or cold, you need to put the whites in a bowl over warm water to warm first).
6. Which a quart of the whites into the cooled chocolate mixture to lighten it, then gently fold in the remaining whites.
7. Clean and dry the mixing bowl, making sure not a drop of water is in the bowl.
8. Beat the whipping cream on high until soft peaks form. DO NOT OVERBEAT, since hard whipping cream (almost like butter) won’t fold into the mousse, and it will be ruined.
9. Try not to eat the entire thing as you spoon into your serving glasses.
10. Refrigerate for 2 hours.
11. Before serving, add a dollop of whipping cream to top.