CHOCOLATE MOUSSE / MOUSSE AU CHOCOLAT
Given the salted butter used in this chocolate mousse, it could only have originated in Brittany, where there is virtually no other kind of butter. The salt is subtle, adding a lovely counterpoint to the rich chocolate. I like to vary the flavor of the mousse by adding orange zest, coffee, a bit of ground fennel or a tiny bit of ginger. The beauty of this mousse recipe is its infinite character—you can change it to suit your whim, and your menu. I have even tried it with unsalted butter—it is very different, and very delicious as well.
NOTE: when melting ingredients in a double boiler, don’t cover it, as the condensation that forms on the top can drip into the ingredients, altering taste and texture.
3 large eggs, separated
7 oz (200 g) semisweet chocolate, preferably Lindt
4 tbsp (2 oz or 60 g) lightly salted butter
1 tbsp very strong coffee
1. Melt the chocolate and butter in a double boiler over medium-high heat. Remove from heat and whisk in the egg yolks and coffee. Let cool.
2. Place the egg whites and salt in a large bowl, or the bowl of a mixer fitted with a whisk, and whisk them until they form soft peaks. Fold one-fourth of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture first, then fold in the rest. Taste for seasoning—you can carefully fold in additional coffee at this point if you like. Transfer the mousse to a serving bowl (or individual ramekins) and refrigerate for at least 2 hours (and up to 24 hours), tightly covered.
Serves 4 to 6
Susan Herrmann Loomis teaches cooking classes in Normandy and Paris. www.onruetatin.com.
Find her latest book, Nuts in the Kitchen (HarperCollins) in the France Today Bookstore: www.francetoday. com/store
For more food stories and French recipes: www.francetoday.com/life_and_style/ chefs_corner
Originally published in the September 2011 issue of France Today
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