Saturday, January 12, 2008

Aunt Louise's Famous Chocolate Mousse

Every Christmas Eve since I can remember, my parents and I would drive to my aunt and uncle's house in rural Maryland for dinner, dessert, and P's. (presents!) We'd drive home around midnight, listening to Swedish Christmas carols, and I'd stare up at the stars until we got too close to civilization to do so anymore!

My favorite part, and what I always associate with Christmas, is my aunt's chocolate mousse. After the wine has been drunk, the presents opened, the coffee poured, and the elastic-waist (thank goodness!) pajamas put on, we cousins (now in our late 20s and 30s, with husbands) start saying, "Moooooousse!" We can hardly fit any more food in our stomachs, but it's so worth it for this once-a-year treat.

My aunt and uncle retired to New Hampshire this past year, and while I'll never have another Maryland family Christmas Eve, I can still have Aunt Louise's mousse!

Sorry, but this is another recipe that isn't really for beginners, but I just had to make it. For the sentiment.

Aunt Louise's Famous Chocolate Mousse
(originally from Woman's Day Famous French Cookery)

1 pkg (2 t.) unflavored gelatin
1/4 c. + 1/2 c. cold water
1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
3 squares Baker's unsweetened chocolate
3 eggs, separated
1 t. vanilla extract
2 T. cognac or brandy
(whipped cream, optional)

Soften gelatin in 1/4 c. cold water.

In top of double boiler (or stand there and stir over low heat!), combine sweetened condensed milk and chocolate. Cook until chocolate melts. Continue cooking, stirring, until chocolate mixture is smooth and very thick (about 5 minutes). Gradually stir in 1/2 cup water, keeping mixture smooth.

Beat egg yolks slightly with a fork. Stir a small amount of the hot mixture into the egg yolks (this is so you don't get scrambled eggs!). Return egg mixture to pot. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture is smooth and thick (about 5 minutes).

Remove from heat and stir in softened gelatin, vanilla, and cognac/brandy. Stir until gelatin is dissolved. Cool to room temperature.

Beat egg whites with a hand-held mixer until they stand in stiff peaks. When room temperature chocolate mixture mounds slightly when dropped from a spoon, fold in egg whites.

Pour mixture into a 5-cup mold that has been slightly oiled with non-stick spray.

Refrigerate 3 hours or until firm.

Unmold onto serving plate and serve with whipped cream, if desired. (I place mold upright in warm water to loosen.)

Merry Christmas

1 comment:

AL said...

I'm honored that "my" chocolate mousse is on your blog. I've tried other recipes, and this is the best; I don't try any others anymore. Come to NH and have some more!

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