As you will all know, there are certain dishes, be they savoury or sweet, that stick in one’s mind in an almost belligerent manner. Such treats, though delicious in the first instance, often subject one to interminable temptation, thus reducing even real men like myself (snigger) to insatiable wretches. The only thing able to cure such flagrant desire is what caused it in the first place, or something very much like it. The only problem with that is it creates a rather detestable cycle in which one becomes hooked to a certain food. In my case chocolate mousse is the culprit – it is simply too good. However, since I rarely like to make the same dessert twice I had to think of a way to alter the recipe, but still maintain what I loved about it in the first place; it’s texture and lightness. Happily, this was easily achievable since coffee is both easy to incorporate into such a thing and combines so well with chocolate that I’ve often, and rather strangely, mistaken them for long lost brothers. Indeed, this mousse works so well that I think it is perhaps better than my previous rendition!
I see so many mousse recipes on the internet, yet a large proportion of them cause me to experience severe convulsions and to froth at the mouth, not because these recipes are irresistible, but because they aren’t actually mousse. By this I mean that they aren’t light and don’t contain little bubbles – a characteristic which every mousse must possess. In my opinion, if you aren’t going to fold beaten egg whites into your mousse, then there probably isn’t any point in making it at all. Oh and it also doesn’t require anything heavy like double cream – it needs to be lighter than air. I don’t mean to be scathing, but if you’re going to make a set chocolate sauce then why not be proud of it and say so?!
When making this mousse please ensure that your chocolate contains cocoa solids of absolutely no less that 55%, though 70% would be more suitable. If one starts using chocolate with less than 55% cocoa solids the mousse could start getting a little heavy. Remember, it wants to be kept as light as possible, a fact I’m sure you won’t quickly forget after the previous paragraph. I only used two tablespoons of caster sugar in my egg whites because I like my chocolate desserts to be bitter, particularly if they contain coffee. However, if one has a bit of a sweet tooth one may, of course, add a little more sugar – three tablespoons should do it. Whatever your tastes, I hope you enjoy this rather simple, yet decadent and indulgent dessert.
Makes 4 large pots or 6-10 smaller pots
• 200g dark chocolate
• 100ml strong instant coffee
• 4 eggs
• 2 tbsp caster sugar
1. Melt the chocolate together with the coffee either in a microwave or in a bowl over a pan of boiling water. Beat the egg yolks into the chocolate one by one.
2. Transfer the egg whites into a large mixing bowl and beat until they form soft peaks. Add the sugar and continue to beat until the point at which they begin to form harder, stiffer peaks – be careful not to over beat. Gently fold the egg whites into the chocolate mixture in three parts.
3. When fully incorporated transfer the mixture into vessels of one’s own choice, bung them in the fridge and serve after an hour or so.
Cost: Unfortunately, since my last mousse post, my chicken’s eggs have become nigh on un-useable, so this set me back a little more than 70p. Still, at the moment our local grocers are selling 6 medium eggs for £1, which means that these fabulous desserts remained low in price at a mere £1.50.