Sunday, January 30, 2011
White Chocolate Mint Mousse
Biscuit Boy has just had a big birthday, well actually it's tomorrow ! We celebrated at home last night with family and friends. There were about 20 adults and 10 children, which doesn't sound a lot, but in a non-extended, three-bedroomed, traditional semi-detatched house in the UK, that's not a lot of space !
I had also been wondering what on earth to cook for all of these people, since there wouldn't be room to sit and eat properly, so since it was supposed to be a party I resolved to make buffet food that could be eaten with just a fork and nothing too complicated to serve or heat or prepare etc etc. This IS supposed to be a party !!!
In my search through my ever-growing cookbook collection, there's not a whole lot on buffet or party food, but in Nigella Express I found a first buffet recipe for the dessert side of things. It's definitely a winner, easy to make and the party guests loved it !
250gr white chocolate
1 egg white
250ml double cream
1/4 tsp peppermint extract ( I think I added another quarter as it was not very minty)
6 fresh mint leaves (optional)
2-3 tsp Grated dark chocolate (This one's not in the original recipe, but as you can see from the photo that is what I added. Well, actually, my brother added it, as he thought it needed a little texture... not that he even knows how to chop cucumber tho !!!!! Let alone advise on anything else culinary.)
1. Break up the chocolate and put into a glass bowl and place over a saucepan of simmering water. Stir occasionally until the chocolate has melted.
2. Once melted, leave the chocolate to cool slightly.
3. Whilst the chocolate is melting/cooling.. whip the cream, egg white and peppermint together. Not until it's stiff but until it forms 'soft' peaks. Nigella says use a handheld whisk, I had other stuff to do, so I let my KitchenAid do the whisking.
4. Put a dollop of cream into the slight cooled chocolate mixture and whisk, and then gently fold this chocolate mixture into the cream. (I didn't quite do that, I'll be honest when I tell you that when I added the spoon of cream, the mixture seemed to practically fizz... I am thinking that maybe the chocolate had not cooled enough, and then I added the rest of the cream to the same (still warm) bowl. In the end, I put it all back in the Kitchen Aid and gave it another whisk to get rid of the chocolate lumps that had formed... although it tasted just as delicious with the lumps... However, Nigella's recipe says...
5.Gently fold the chocolate mixture into the cream....
6. Divide the mixture between six glasses.
As this was a buffet dessert I divided the mix between shot glasses, so there was a small portion per person. Cupcake and I used a piping bag to put the mousse into the shot glasses. The above yielded approximately 22 shot glasses and that's allowing for some wastage as we got to grips with the piping bag.
7. Place in the fridge, or in the freezer for 10-15 minutes if you are in a rush. Mine were cling-filmed and put in the fridge for a couple of days prior to the party and suffered no ill effect. Just before serving sprinkle the plain chocolate over the top of the mousses. (I just had a thought - If the plural of mouse is mice, what's the plural of mousse ?? micce?)
8. Remember the dish contains raw eggs so please avoid if you have a weakened immune system.
A truly lovely, (relatively) easy dessert that will impress your friends and family. Enjoy !