So I might have gotten Julia Child’s “The French Chef” on DVD for Christmas. I might have also watched an excessive amount of it this holiday season. So filled with urge to master the art of French cooking, I thought a lovely mousse might do the trick. I went to my cookbook shelf but, Mon Dieu! Mastering the Art of French Cooking was on top shelf and both the kitchen stool and my 6 foot tall father were nowhere in sight. Additionally, this mousse was being served at a dinner party (which my family will tell is just about the LAST time you want to experiment with new recipes). So instead, I opted for this mousse recipe which I made with success several years ago and which was conveniently stowed on a lower shelf.
Adapted from Dessert by Abigail Johnson Dodge for Williams-Sonoma
8 oz bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped (I was a lazy bum and used chocolate chips)
.25 cup unsalted butter
3 Tbsp. dark rum
2 Tbsp. water
1 Tsp. instant coffee powder (optional)
4 large eggs, separated and at room temperature
1 Tsp. vanilla
.75 whipping cream
Pinch of salt
.25 cup sugar
Garnishing goodies: raspberries, white chocolate, or whipped cream
Step 1: In a double boiler, or similar mechanism, combine chocolate, butter, booze, water, and coffee. Melt the chocolate and butter, and whisk until smooth.
Step 2: Remove mixture from heat, and whisk in egg yolks on at a time. Add vanilla, and whisk until smooth. Set aside.
Here’s what you’re going for.
Step 3: Using an electric mixer, whip cream until it – well – looks like whipped cream. Fairly soft whipped cream.
Step 4: In another bowl, using VERY clean beaters, whip eggs whites and salt until soft-peaks form. Gradually add sugar and continue to beat until glossy, firm peaks form.
Step 5: In a large bowl, fold whipped cream into chocolate mixture. Then fold in egg whites.
Step 6: Chill for at least 4 hours or up to overnight before serving.
Note: I found this mousse to be, for lack of a better word, a little boozy. So maybe take it easy on the rum kids.