Do you have that special dessert planned for your romantic Valentine's Day meal?
Chocolate with it long history of being an aphrodisiac is a perfect addition for your romantic meal. Mayan and Aztec nobility consumed chocolate for its seductive powers. History also tells us that Casanova drank massive amounts of chocolate daily to keep up with his extracurricular activities.
A soft, creamy and airy chocolate mousse is the perfect way to end a romantic meal and begin your own extracurricular activities.
This recipe has been created and re-worked to produce a foamy, yet creamy and delicious dessert and still be able to get you out of the kitchen fast to enjoy your evening!
Place 1 cup of heavy cream in a sauce pan with the orange rind and heat until a slow rolling boil. Take it off the stove and add the grand marnier, chopped chocolate and orange extract. Let sit. This recipe calls for a mild orange flavor to the chocolate but feel free to make this recipe your own. Replace the orange rind, extract and grand marnier liqueur (orange infusion). There is Chambord (raspberry); Creme de casis (black current); and another variation, which is my personal favorite, coffee liqueur. Once the chocolate melts, stir until the mixture is glistening and smooth.
In choosing chocolate, remember, better quality of chocolate, will result in a richer and creamier mousse.
In a separate dry, clean mixing bowl add the egg whites with a pinch of salt. Start whipping to incorporate a bit of air, then increase the speed and whip those egg whites into submission adding the sugar at the end. Continue to whip until stiff peaks are formed. Let's talk about egg whites. If you feel uncomfortable about using raw eggs there are brands of pasteurized eggs that can be readily found in the local Jewels or Dominicks grocery stores. Either way, to whip the eggs, make sure they are room temperature and there is absolutely no yoke in the mix.
Gently fold the egg whites into the cooled chocolate mixture. Don't over mix as it will break down the air bubbles. Better to have a little of the white to show than to have a flat mousse. The egg whites will add the "foam" needed to create a stiff but fluffy chocolate mousse. Add to individual serving dishes or glasses and refrigerate for a few hours until firm or at least until you can't wait any longer.
- 1 cup of heavy cream
- 2-3 large strips of orange rind
- 1/4 teaspoon orange extract (optional)
- 2 cups of chocolate (chopped)
- 3 tablespoons grand marnier liqueur
- 4 egg whites (room temperature)
- pinch of salt
- 4 tablespoons sugar
Happy Valentine's Day! Let me know how you enjoy or how you vary your mousse creation!