April 2, 2014 § Leave a comment
Between 2 and 5 every weekday, I go to pastry school. We whisk and fold and ice and glaze and beat and bake. It’s fun, pastry school. Beats regular school hands down. Yesterday we made what I think is better that everything we’ve made in the past two months. We made chocolate mousse. It was a beauty–as beautiful as Zooey Deschanel is. And thats’s a lot of beauty, I tell you! We first made a sabayon; then we added melted cream and chocolate; we finished with the addition of whipped cream. And then we made an omelette with the leftover egg whites and ate it. It was a good day.
Here’s the recipe.
Recipe from IHMCTAN
100 + 150 ml cream
200 gm semi-sweet chocolate (50 – 55 % cocoa solids), roughly chopped
2 egg yolks
1 whole egg
30 gm sugar
15 ml water
In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, heat 100 ml of the cream, but do not bring it to a boil on a low to medium heat. Add the chocolate, and allow it to melt. You can switch off the flame towards the end as the residual heat will melt the chocolate. Stir gently, and do not allow the chocolate to catch and burn at the bottom.
Set a bowl over a pan of gently boiling water (the bowl should not touch the water, and the steam should be the one heating up the contents of the bowl; Alice Medrich contests this method though). Add the egg yolks, whole egg, sugar, and water. Start whisking. Whisk until your arms feel like they’re gonna fall off. Pause, breathe in the smell of petunias, and continue whisking. Whisk until the marigold tinged mixture turns pale and thick. It is imperative that you whisk as if your life depended on it, scraping off all the nooks and crannies of the bowl, lest the sabayon becomes sweet scrambled eggs. (It is altogether likely that some amount of eggs will turn solid, which will make your mousse grainy. It will not be the end of the world if you soldier on, pretending that this didn’t happen. Another thing that didn’t happen: this conversation.) Once the mixture is done, do allow it to cool.
Now, with a spatula, fold in the sabayon-akin mix into the chocolate mix. taste your creation. I like the mousse at this stage way better than the final thing. It is dense and rich and has bags of flavour. But you need to go ahead. Because that is the moral thing to do.
Whip the remaining 150 ml of cream. Fold it into the chocolate-egg mix gently. Very, very, very gently. Fold only until lumps and streaks of white are not visible. DO NOT OVER-MIX. I could scream this from the rooftops–to myself and to everyone in the world. Do not over-mix flour in cake batter and cream and egg whites in mousses, soufflés, puddings, etc. I think this is the most important thing that I have learnt in pastry school so far: how lightly you need to mix and when to stop mixing. Here‘s a video that shows you how to cut and fold whipped cream into the mixture. You can follow the same method for mixing in egg whites and for flour.
Chill for about four hours. Devour!