December 14, 2015 by dgarnett2013
Chocolate and caramel mousse: Master It by Rory O’Connell
Great with caramel sauce and thick pouring cream.
Serves 8 – 10 (portions should be very small)
- 225g chocolate (62% or 70%)
- 50g butter, diced
- 4 eggs
- 225g caster or granulated sugar
- 225ml water
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
Place the chocolate and butter in a Pyrex bowl. Place the bowl over a saucepan of cold water, making sure the water is not touching the bottom of the bowl, and place the pan on the heat.
Bring the water to a simmer and immediately turn off the heat, allowing the butter and chocolate to melt gently in the bowl.
Separate the eggs, putting the whites into a spotlessly clean bowl for whisking later. Whisk the yolks to a pale mousse.
To make the caramel, put the sugar and 125ml of water into a heavy-based saucepan and place on a low heat. Stir occasionally to encourage the sugar and place on a low heat. Stir occasionally to encourage the sugar to dissolve before the liquid comes to a boil. Once it boils and has become a syrup, remove the spoon and do not stir again.
Allow the syrup to become a dark chestnut-coloured caramel. If it is colouring unevenly in the saucepan, tilt the pan gently to and fro to get it to even out by running the dark caramel into the paler syrup. Do not be tempted to stir, as if you put a cold spoon into the caramel, it will ‘block’ and go solid – a disaster. Keep going until the caramel is a deep chestnut colour and almost burnt. Then immediately and quickly add the remaining 100ml of water, hot if possible to prevent less spluttering.
Now the caramel will look a bit odd, but once you put the saucepan back on the heat it will cook to a single consistency again. Cook it until it thickens again – when you dip a spoon into the caramel and allow it to drop off, it will fall in a thickish thread. Pour this gradually on to the whisked egg yolks, whisking all the time. A food mixer with a whisk attachment or a hand held electric whisk will do this job perfectly. The mixture will whisk to a mousse in a matter of minutes. Stir the melted chocolate and the vanilla extract into the mousse. You may need to be a little vigorous with the stirring.
Whisk the egg whites to stiff peaks. Do not allow them to over-whip and become grainy. Stir a quarter of the egg white into the mousse to soften it, then fold in the remaining three-quarters lightly yet throughly. Pour the mixture into a shallow serving dish. There will not be a lot of mousse, but it is rich so the servings should be small. Place the mousse in the fridge to chill for 4 hours.
Serve with a dark caramel sauce and thick pouring cream. Perfectly ripe raspberries, particularly the autumn varieties, are delicious served with this mousse.
Made the day the terrace and border re-design began to really take shape.