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Caramel Chocolate Mousse

Dessert number 3 is a mixture of my two favorites: caramel and chocolate – more specifically a salted caramel and a dark, bittersweet chocolate.

Serves 6

1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons butter, cubed to small pieces
3/4 cup heavy cream
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine
4 large eggs, separated
1/4 teaspoon flaky sea salt (like Maldon)

In a wide saucepan, spread the sugar evenly and heat over medium heat.  Caramelize the sugar until a deep amber color, just before it starts to smoke.  Remove from the heat and quickly whisk the butter, stirring until melted.  Gradually whisk the cream.  Note that the mixture will bubble.  Whisk the mixture until smooth.

Add the chocolate, stir gently until all melted and smooth.  Scrape the mixture into a large bowl and allow to cool to room temperature.  Once cooled, whisk in the egg yolks.

In a separate bowl, whip the egg whites until stiff.  Fold 1/3 of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture.  Sprinkle in the flaky salt.  Fold the remaining egg whites into the chocolate mixture.  Keep folding in the egg whites until no streaks of white remain.  Divide the mousse into 6 ramekins or serving glasses.  Chill for 8 hours or more.  Serve as is, no need for anything else.

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