Chocolate mousse cake. TNS
Who doesn’t love chocolate? It is the magical element that seems to make things better. And, when used as an ingredient, it transforms the dish it is a part of.
CHARLOTTE AU CHOCOLAT
3 tablespoons coffee
3/4 cup water
8 ounces dark chocolate
12 tablespoons butter cut into small cubes
1/2 cup superfine sugar
Fresh mint, optional
Powdered sugar, optional
1. Cut out a piece of parchment paper to completely fit the bottom of an 8-inch cake pan (be sure it is at least 2 1/2 inches high) or a springform pan. Line the inside rim of the pan with ladyfingers; they will stand up easier if you cut off the rounded part on one end.
2. Combine coffee with the water in a wide bowl. Briefly dip more ladyfingers in the liquid and use them to more or less cover the bottom of the pan. Do not discard the liquid.
3. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler. Stir in the butter until completely blended.
4. Separate the eggs, keeping certain not to let any of the yolk get into the whites. Whisk 3 of the yolks in a large bowl with the sugar until the mixture whitens. Reserve the other yolks for future use. Add the chocolate mixture to the yolks and thoroughly mix.
5. Whisk or beat the whites with a pinch of salt until they form stiff peaks. Gently fold the whites into the chocolate mixture until just thoroughly combined. Pour, spoon or pipe half of the chocolate mousse into the mould. Dip more ladyfingers into the liquid and create another layer on top of the mousse. Top with the remainder of the mousse. Refrigerate at least 3 hours.
6. To serve, invert the mould onto a large plate — the mousse should be set enough that it will not slip. Remove the parchment paper and then invert this plate back onto a serving platter. Decorate with raspberries, pistachios, leaves of mint or powdered sugar, if you wish.
RASPBERRY MACAROONS IN CHOCOLATE SHELLS
2 cups dried, sweetened, flaked coconut
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 large egg white
Pinch of coarse salt
1/2 cup fresh raspberries
6 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
2 tablespoons coconut oil (or corn syrup if not observing Passover)
Toasted walnuts, toasted coconut, sanding sugar, coloured sugar, fleur de sel, etc., for garnish
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine coconut, granulated sugar, egg white and salt in a food processor and pulse until just combined, scraping down sides of bowl if necessary. Add raspberries and pulse until just incorporated (do not over-process).
2. Scoop mounds of coconut mixture 1 inch apart onto a parchment-lined baking sheet, using a 1/2-ounce (11/4-inch) ice cream scoop or a tablespoon to form small mounds.
3. Bake until macaroons are lightly golden, 28 to 30 minutes, rotating baking sheet halfway through cooking. Transfer macaroons to a wire rack and let cool.
4. Place chocolate in a bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water and stir until melted. Add coconut oil or corn syrup, stirring until combined, then remove from heat.
5. Dip bottoms of macaroons in chocolate or completely cover with chocolate (a flexible spatula will help with this), transferring as dipped to a wax-paper-lined baking sheet. Garnish as desired while still warm, then refrigerate until firm, at least 30 minutes and up to 1 day. Serve chilled.
CHOCOLATE MOUSSE CAKE
For the meringue
3 egg whites
2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
For the mousse
4 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
5 eggs, separated
2 sticks (1 cup) plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, preferably Dutch process
1. For the meringue: Preheat the oven to 150 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whisk the egg whites until they form soft peaks. Very slowly, add the powdered sugar and continue whisking until doubled in volume.
3. Place the meringue in a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip. On the baking sheet, working from the centre outward, pipe a continuous coil of meringue to a diameter of 7 inches. Bake for 10 hours, until crisp and dry.
4. To make the mousse: Line an 8-inch round cake pan with parchment paper.
5. Melt the chocolate in a stainless steel bowl set over a pot of simmering water. Remove from the heat and whisk in the egg yolks one at a time. Set the mixture aside and keep warm.
6. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, whip the butter and slowly add the cocoa powder until thoroughly incorporated. Add the chocolate and egg yolk mixture and mix well. Set aside.
7. In a clean bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip the egg whites until they form soft peaks (you can also do this by hand). With a rubber spatula, gently fold the egg whites into the chocolate mixture, one-third of the whipped whites at a time.
8. Place the mousse in a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip and pipe the mixture into the cake pan. Fill the pan half full. Lay the meringue disc on top and gently press into place. Pipe the remaining chocolate mixture into the pan, allowing it to fill in around the sides of the meringue. Chill for 2 hours.
9. To serve, run a warm paring knife around the inside rim of the pan to loosen the cake and invert it onto a serving tray. Carefully remove the parchment paper and dust with unsweetened cocoa powder.
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