Today the recipe for the French Fridays with Dorie group is a Top-Secret Chocolate Mousse. The mousse derives its catchy name from the fact the original recipe comes from the back of a Nestlé Dessert Chocolate bar – as pointed out to Dorie by one of her close French friends.
Mousse au chocolat is truly a classic French bistro dessert. It is quick and easy to make and best served the day that it is made. There are countless recipes for chocolate mousse and the classic version usually calls for melting chocolate and butter together before proceeding with the rest of recipe. Dorie´s recipe, however, does not contain butter and counts all but four ingredients, namely chocolate, eggs, salt and sugar.
Since the mousse contains so few ingredients, you have to choose the best ingredients that you can find. The simple secret behind a fantastic chocolate mousse is to use really good quality chocolate. Look for something 60% or above cocoa solids, anything under just will not do. Since the flavor of the mousse entirely depends on good chocolate, do buy a really good brand, you will not regret it.
Because the recipe is classic French, it uses raw eggs. Whenever I prepare anything that uses uncooked eggs, I use the freshest eggs I can get my hands on either from a farmer´s store or, as today, from my trusted “Organic Food Store”.
Once you have assembled all your high quality ingredients, you can go ahead and prepare the recipe. Gently melt the chocolate, cool slightly, combine with the egg yolks, beat the egg whites with the sugar and gently fold the sweetened egg whites into the chocolate mixture. Chill until set. Voilà! The biggest difficulty when preparing a chocolate mousse, is melting the chocolate properly. When melting chocolate over simmering water, you have to be careful that the water is not too hot or the chocolate will melt too quickly and may go grainy, then you will not get a smooth mousse. You should not stir it too much either, it is better to take it off the heat once softened, then let it melt naturally. If you use a microwave to melt it, take care to use a defrost or low-wattage setting.
In France, they often serve chocolate mousse from a big bowl, scooped onto a plate with some cookies. I decided to spoon the mousse into individual tea cups and serve “Eiserkuchen” alongside. I baked these waffels in my special well-worn waffle maker. For the waffle batter you have to dissolve rock candy in boiling water and only when that has cooled down do you add the remaining ingredients which include my favorite spice of all, cinnamon, but you can also add cardamom or anise. After you bake each waffle separately, you roll them up while still piping hot and thanks to the waffle maker and the rock candy, once they have cooled down, they are delectably crunchy. We usually eat them either on their own or with some whipped cream, so they were the perfect partners to the chocolate mousse with whipped cream! Could not ask for more!
Chocolate mousse is always a crowd pleaser. You can make it for a deliciously rich finale to a dinner party but it is equally wonderful with an afternoon cup of coffee or tea. And while I liked serving the chocolate mousse today with a dollop of whipped cream, in my opinion, it really is also wonderful on its own. A very nice and easy recipe which everyone enjoyed!
To see how the mousse au chocolate turned out for the other members of the French Fridays with Dorie group, please do click here.