I may have mentioned before that my dad doesn’t really eat anything I bake. Instead he has blocks of Cadbury milk chocolate or gross packet biscuits, the plain ones covered in dark chocolate. It breaks my heart a little when I have spent the day baking a chocolate cake and instead of trying some he wolfs down chocolate biscuits.
On the rare occasions that he does try something I have baked, I am completely stunned. So you should be able to imagine my shock then, when he asked me, “Natasha, will you make me some chocolate mousse?”.
So I made the chocolate mousse. What else was I going to do? This is Julia Child’s recipe and according to David Lebovitz, it is a classic. It uses mainly chocolate, eggs, butter and sugar. I don’t know why some people put whipped cream into chocolate mousse and others use butter. I will get back to you on that one.
Adapted from David Lebovitz.
The flavour of the chocolate is important here, so use one that you like. Also, feel free to omit (or change) the coffee and alcohol used in the recipe.
170g dark chocolate (6 ounces)
170g unsalted butter (6 ounces)
1/4 cup dark brewed coffee (60ml)
2/3 cup sugar (170g) + 1 tbsp
2 tbsp Tia Maria (30ml)
1 tbsp water (15ml)
1/2 tsp vanilla
This recipe works best if you get everything ready in advance. Fill the bottom saucepan of a double boiler (or a large pot) one-third full with water and put it on the stove to heat. Separate your eggs; whites into the bowl of an electric mixer and yolks into a metal bowl large enough to fit securely over your pot of water. Get another large bowl (that can fit the bowl with the egg yolks in it) and fill it with ice. Chop your chocolate and butter.
Add 2/3 cup sugar, the Tia Maria and water to the egg yolks. Fit the bowl over the pot of simmering water and whisk for about three minutes until the mixture is thick.
Remove from the heat and place the bowl into the ice bath. Whisk until cool and thick.
Using an electric mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites with the salt until they hold their shape. Add the tablespoon of sugar and continue to beat until thick and shiny, but not completely stiff. Add the vanilla and beat until combined.
Pour the mousse into a serving bowl or small dishes. Refrigerate until set, for at least 4 hours. I couldn’t wait and dipped strawberries into the runny mousse (see the photos above). It is winter and I have no idea why strawberries are in season, but they go so well with chocolate. Serves 6-8.