Recently I was searching Food Blogs and came across this delightful Food Blog called: Channeling Julia Child and felt Julia channeling me (Just kidding ;) to pull out my old torn and tattered copy of The French Chef Cookbook. It almost instantly opens to page 25, a recipe for what Julia Child called, "A queen among chocolate mousses" and it is very near and dear to my heart as it was my first Julia Child recipe I ever prepared. The few simple ingredients: coffee, eggs, sugar, and butter as well as the elementary kitchen tasks of mixing, whipping, and folding makes me feel so 1950's housewife which makes the donning of a frilly apron almost a must in the preparing of this mousse, bon appetit!
Note: I am going to show this recipe in 3 parts like Julia does in her cookbook.Tools
hand mixer:2 sets of whisks is helpful , 2 separate mixing bowls, a large pot for use as a double boiler, medium sized serving-bowl
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
4 tablespoons strong coffee (espresso)
1 1/2 sticks warm/room temp butter
Pour the hot coffee over the chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and stir vigorously (Such a Julia word!) until smooth & melted, if it does not melt place it in the microwave for 10 seconds and try again. If the coffee is cool just put them both in the microwave for 30 seconds and stir vigorously until melted and smooth. Set aside in a warm spot (on top of a heated oven) until ready to use. Just stir every now and then to keep it from hardening up again. You will add the butter later.
4 egg yolks (reserve egg whites you will be using them next)
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup strong coffee cooled off or flavored liqueur of your choice (orange is Julia's suggestion)
Set up your pot of simmering water and bring to a simmer.
Beat the egg yolks in 1 bowl while adding the sugar slowly and beat until thick, pale, and creamy. When you lift up the mixer the mixture will fall down into the bowl back onto it self like a ribbon.
Beat in the coffee or liqueur until blended.
Now set this on top of the simmering water (make sure no water gets in the bowl) and beat with the mixer for about 3-5 minutes: until foamy and warm to the touch.
Remove from heat and mix with the mixer until creamy and thick like homemade mayonnaise which is a little thinner than commercial mayonnaise. Set aside.
At this point add the butter to the chocolate and stir vigorously until smooth.
Now add the chocolate into the slightly cooled egg mixture and mix with the mixer until smooth and creamy.
4 reserved egg whites
2 tablespoons sugar
In the second very clean bowl (Or as Julia would say,"impeccably clean") and with a very clean whisk whip the egg whites until until foamy. Add salt and whip until soft peaks form.
Add sugar and whip until stiff peaks form. How to Beat Egg Whites For Dummies
Add a third of the egg whites to the chocolate/egg yolk mixture and fold in until you can't see the whites anymore.
Now dump the rest of the whites into the chocolate/egg yolk mixture and fold in until no whites show anymore. Be careful to not whip which will deflate the whites.
Pour into a medium serving bowl that you have buttered well and cover with plastic wrap making sure it touches the top of the mousse completely so that it will not form a skin.
Refrigerate for several hours or over night.
Tips & Hints
Serve with Creme Chantilly (homemade whipped cream) *see recipe below
Grate chocolate with a small cheese grater for a topping: I used 2 chocolate chips per cup
Pour into buttered individual bowls to set instead of 1 large bowl.
Freeze the mousse and dump out onto a plate upside down and slice and serve like cheesecake.
*Creme Chantilly (Homemade Whipped Cream)
1 cup heavy cream chilled
1 teaspoon vanilla or 2 tablespoons liqueur
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
Place in a chilled bowl and whip with a wire whisk until thick and creamy. You can refrigerate this and just re-whip it up a bit before serving.
Using a hand or stand mixer this just takes a few seconds.