A few more days to go and it is Durga Puja. The social media timeline will be flooded with Bengali food, Bengali brunch, Bengali recipes and everything Bengali. A complete wrong time to publish this post. But then, it was supposed to have been published when Anindya was in Italy for the slow food festival. One would think, that being in the same city as your parents and the rest of your family, would be such a blessing in terms of the support for your kids. It is absolutely true. Tugga was practically raised by my mother and aunts till such time, Brishti came into the picture.
Now, Tugga spends all his time at home. He doesn’t even go out with friends, just in case I spend more time with Brishti. He is going through the insecurity phase and we are both trying to give as much time to him as possible. And then again, my daughter refuses to stay with my parents. So here I am, mother of two, with my entire family around me and still not having any time to myself!! Oh, and not to forget, having parents around also means giving time to them and taking care of their needs as well. Now that you are completely bored of my whining, let me take you to the double chocolate mousse cake and how it is a dinner party hit.
I made it for the first time during a Durga Puja party at one of our friend’s place last year. I was looking for a recipe which would be chocolate based and particularly rich and decadent. Found it in a Rachel Allen cookbook. When you read the recipe of double chocolate mousse cake, it sounds like a daunting task. However, once you start doing it, following the recipe to the ‘T’, it is quite a breeze. The only thing that is absolutely essential for this recipe is good quality chocolate. Do not even try it with the commercially available cooking chocolates. I did add an extra element or rather a crunch in the dessert with a pistachio and almond shard. Also, I knew there were children in the party and they usually do not prefer dark chocolate. All I had was 75% dark chocolate. Hence, for the chocolate mousse coating, I decided to mix it up with a little bit of milk chocolate. The result was phenomenal. Since then, the double chocolate mousse cake has become a regular at most dinner parties along with other desserts. Sometimes it also comes as a request from friends before the party.
I always choose the best chocolate for melting because it affects the taste and overall output. Choosing high-quality chocolate is the secret to this recipe, along with a cheerful heart while creating this double chocolate mousse cake masterpiece. Nothing should stop you from perfecting this recipe for your loved ones’ enjoyment like I do.
Here are some useful tips to obtain the best results when baking chocolate mousse:
- The low setting with a paddle attachment is recommended when using a stand mixer.
- Using real chocolate is important because chocolate substitutions don’t taste as delicious as real ones. You can use grated bars or semi-sweet chocolate chips for the best results.
- When beating the eggs and whipping cream, mix them to achieve the fluffiest results. Remember that you’ll have a dense, thick mouse if you beat them longer. On the other hand, beating a little creates a creamier texture. Hence, beating the two mixtures should be well-balanced.
But of course, you can always try other techniques that you find helpful when baking a double chocolate mousse cake. Recipes vary, and you might be interested in trying something new every time. By doing so, you can choose the best steps that you can make it your own to bake the best version of your homemade double chocolate mousse cake.
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Double Chocolate Mousse Cake
For the Pistachio and Almond Shard
- 1/2 cup pistachios deshelled
- 1/4 cup almonds
- 1/2 cup Caster sugar
- 2 tbsp water
For Chocolate Mousse Cake
- 50 gm /2 oz Butter and extra for greasing
- 200 gm /7 oz dark chocolate at least 55 % and more cocoa
- 5 Nos Eggs
- 150 gm /5 oz Caster sugar
- pinch of salt
For the chocolate mousse coating
- 100 gm /3 1/2 oz dark chocolate at least 55 % and more cocoa (see notes)
- 2 nos Eggs
- 50 gm /2 oz Butter
Pistachio and Almond Shard
- This is something that can be done the day before and kept in an airtight container. Lightly dry roast the pistachios and the almonds over low heat in a frying pan and keep aside. Keep a silicon cookie sheet handy or a baking tray with butter paper ready.
- In a heavy bottomed pan, take the sugar and water and turn on the heat. Stir the sugar till it dissolves. Once the sugar dissolves, stop stirring and let the sugar caramelise over high heat. It takes about 7 minutes for the sugar to caramelise. Once it becomes a beautiful amber colour, put in all the roasted nuts and give it a mix to coat the nuts with the caramel.
- Pour the nutty caramel on the prepared tray and spread with a spatula. Be careful since the caramel is extremely hot and will burn your skin. Once spread properly, keep aside for cooling down. It will become brittle once it has cooled down completely.
Chocolate Mousse Cake
- Preheat the oven at 180 degree C and prepare two nos 7 inch cake tins with parchment paper at the bottom, while greasing the sides with butter and dusting with flour.
- Cut the chocolate into small pieces and place them with butter on a bowl sitting over a pot of boiling water. The bowl should be at least a cm away from the water. Using a spatula, stir the butter and chocolate till the butter has melted and the chocolate starts to melt. Take it off the heat and let the chocolate melt in the residual heat.
- Separate the yolk from the whites. Place all the yolks in a bowl and the sugar. Whisk for a few minutes until light and pale. By this time the chocolate mixture would have cooled down a bit.
- Now slowly pour in the chocolate mixture into the egg yolks from one side. Beat the chocolate completely into the egg yolk mixture.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the whites with a pinch of salt. I have used an electric hand mixer to do it. You can use your hand whisks or a stand mixer or whatever you are comfortable with.
- You need to whisk the whites till they form a stiff peak. Then fold the egg white mixture into the chocolate mixture.
- Divide this mousse into the two prepared tins. Bake in the oven for approximately 30 minutes or until the skewer comes out clean.
- One thing to be noted here is that this is not a sponge cake and needs to be moist in the centre. Plus it is also flourless. So even a minute extra will dry out the cake. You need to watch it like a hawk towards the end.
- Let the cakes cool down completely before you take them out of the tin.
Chocolate Mousse Coating
- While the cake is baking in the oven, you can start with this element.
- Place the chocolate, cut into small pieces in a bowl sitting over boiling water and melt the chocolate. Once the chocolate has started melting, take it off the heat and melt it slowly. Alternatively, if you are confident about microwave cooking, then melt the chocolate in the microwave.
- For microwave, you need to reduce the power to 80 percent and then every 20 seconds you need to open and stir the chocolate till it has melted.
- Separate the eggs and beat the yolks into the warm chocolate. Then beat in the butter which should be at room temperature.
- Whip the egg whites in a separate bowl into stiff peaks. Fold in a quarter of the egg white into the chocolate- yolk mixture and incorporate everything thoroughly.
- Finally fold in the rest of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture very gently so that the air doesn't get knocked out. It should remian light and airy.
- Place this mousse in the refrigerator and let it become stiff so that it can be iced on the cake. It takes about a couple of hours.
- Place one cooled cake upside down on a plate.
- Break the pistachio and almond shard into several pieces (the bigger ones for decorating). Take some small pieces and using a mortal and pestle, break them into small praline like texture.
- Spread a couple of tbsp of the chocolate mousse over the top over every inch of the cake. Then spread the praline over this.
- Cover with the second cake and then ice the top and sides of the cake with rest of the mousse.
- Finally garnish the top with the pistachio shards.
- I used Mii Spezial Organic 75% dark chocolate Coverture for this dessert. To make the mousse child friendly, I used 50 gms of milk chocolate and 50 gms of dark chocolate.
- I have also used Amul single origin dark chocolates another time to make this dessert which have 55 % cocoa solids and that works fabulously too.
- You can make this dessert with the caramelised shards if you want to.
- The caramelised shards can be made with any favourable nuts.
- The cake will rise in the oven and then collapse a bit and it is alright since it is a flourless cake.