Prep 30 mins
Cook 5 mins
Don't be afraid of chocolate mousse anymore ! Admittedly this recipe dirties a few bowls, but the result is impressive as well as delicious.
- 8 ounces unsweetened dark chocolate, chopped
- 4 eggs, separated
- 1 ounce sugar
- 5 ounces whipping cream
- Melt the chocolate in a glass bowl over simmering water, stirring till completely smooth.
- Remove bowl from pan.
- In another bowl, beat the egg yolks then whisk them into the chocolate.
- This will cook, but not scramble, them.
- Allow to cool to room temperature.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites and sugar together to soft peaks.
- Whisk a third of them into the chocolate mixture, then gently fold in the remainder.
- Whip the cream to a soft peak, and fold into the chocolate mixture.
- Spoon into dessert or wine glasses.
- Refrigerate for 30 minutes to set.
- If made well in advance, remove from the refrigerator up to one hour before serving.
Regading American vs. European chocolate: I used to work for Lindt, hence my choice to use Swiss chocolate instead of Hershey's. Although there is a difference in the "conching" (cooking process that Mimi referred to), the primary difference between American and European chocolates is in the milk. The pasteurization process in America is substantially different than really anywhere else in the world, so I think the REAL blame for poor results with this recipe should be placed on the USDA. I'd highly recommend using a European chocolate for this recipe. Lindt tends to be one of the less expensive imported brands, assuming there is a Lindt store in your area (mostly in the Northeast). It can also be ordered online. You should be using a "semi sweet" or "bitter sweet" chocolate, which would have about a 45-60% cocoa content. Anything darker (>60%) will probably not work well, as it has very little milk and would not react well in a mousse.
Another thing you may want to try is melting the chocolate with the egg yolks in the bowl. This works for creams as well (making Ganache). This should stop your chocolate from seizing. The chocolate and eggs (or any "liquid") need to be around the same temp and consistency... anyway maybe that will help?
Using Lindt, the best chocolate on earth, (and I'm not just saying that because I'm Swiss) I found this recipe was not as easy as it sounds when reading it. I forgot that working with egg whites is a challenge. But, you just need to pay attention to what you are doing and not let your mind drift off while making this recipe and it will turn out wonderful. With regards to Pvt Amys Mom's comments/review - in my humble opinion, this is what I think went wrong with your experience both times: yes there is a difference between American chocolate and European. Even the unsweetened kind. It's the different method between the European and American way of making the actual chocolate itself. I've worked with both Hershey’s and Bakers unsweetend in the past, and 95% of the time, both brands are fine for most recipes. However mousse is a very sensitive recipe which means you have to go out of your way and splurge on the higher quality chocolate because it makes all the difference. The reason why: There is a difference between how the American chocolate and European chocolate is processed. In Europe, they cook the cocoa bean longer to get the maximum amount of flavor. As I recall, reading the back of unsweetened American chocolate - I believe I did see a form of sugar listed in the ingredients.... even though it was unsweeted chocolate. I think the American chocolate is not as pure and those extra additives will weigh down the mousse, which is why you had the clumping. If it is a European recipe, if possible, try to get as close to European ingredients as possible because sometimes the American substitute is not compatible. Doesn't mean it's wrong or bad - just different. For Example: The electric plugs for American appliances won't fit into the electric plugs in Europe because they are different. That's all. Hope that helps everyone out.