A simple chocolate mouse is one of the easiest desserts to make and no less impressive because of it. The intense chocolate flavour is often enough, but I like to enhance it with a little orange or brandy. You could serve the mousse on its own, with a little cream or for a true celebration of flavour with this salted caramel sauce. I'll be forever grateful to the French genius who first put salt in caramel. The ultimate expression of salty and sweet. This sauce works brilliantly with the chocolate mousse but as you can imagine it is just as happy drizzled over vanilla ice cream.
- 0 For chocolate mousse:
- 120 g dark chocolate (,anything from 55-70% cocoa solids)
- 120 ml regular or double cream
- 0.5 – 1 tsp finely grated orange rind or 2 tbsp orange liqueur or brandy
- 2 eggs separated
- for the salted caramel sauce:
- 225 g sugar, caster or granulated
- 75 ml water
- 110 g butter
- 175 ml regular or double cream
- a good pinch of salt (i love to use salt flakes such as maldon or atlantic sea salt)
- for the shortbread biscuits:
- 150 g plain flour
- 100 g soft butter
- 50 g caster sugar
- For Chocolate Mousse:
- Chop the chocolate. In a saucepan, bring the cream up to the boil, turn off the heat, add the chocolate to the cream and stir it around until the chocolate melts. Add the grated zest or alcohol and whisk in the egg yolks. In a separate, clean, dry bowl, whisk the egg whites until just stiff, then stir a quarter of the egg white into the cream mixture. Gently fold in the rest of the egg whites, then spoon into little bowls, glasses or cups and leave for two hours in the fridge to set. Serve with the salted caramel sauce.
- For the salted caramel sauce:
- Place the sugar and the water in a saucepan over a medium heat and stir as it heats up to dissolve the sugar. Once the sugar has dissolved stir in the butter, turn the heat up to high and cook for about 10 minutes until it turns a toffee colour. Do not stir the pan though you might need to swirl the pan occasionally if you see it turning golden on one side of the pan before the other. Once it is a rich golden toffee colour tale it off the heat for a moment and stir in half the cream. When the bubbles die down, stir in the rest of the cream and the salt to taste( it will depend on the type of salt used and of course your taste how much you’ll need. Serve with the chocolate mousse and shortbread biscuits.
- For the shortbread biscuits:
- Preheat the oven to 180c/350f/gas 4.
- Put the flour and sugar into a mixing bowl, rub in the soft butter and bring the whole mixture together to form a stiff dough. Do not add any water.
- Roll the dough out to about 1/ 2 cm thickness and cut into shapes, place carefully on a baking tray and cook in the oven for 6-10mins, or until pale golden.
- Take out and carefully transfer the biscuits on to a wire rack to cool, I lift them off using a palette knife or metal fish slice.
More by Rachel Allen:
- Milk Ice Cream: A little DIY, A lot of Taste
- Chocolate Meringue Cake: A serious picnic bonus
- Fennel, pink grapefruit, feta salad: Rachel Allen