Chocolate mousse is one of the most delicious desserts on the planet, but that is not its biggest upside. Melted chocolate folded into whipped egg whites or cream pretty much sums up the method of preparation. Yes, chocolate mousse recipes are very, very easy to make.
A wise man (or woman) once said: ‘Your chocolate mousse is as good as the chocolate you use’. So, in order to make a heavenly dessert, you need the best chocolate you can find.
Baking chocolate or milk chocolate? Bittersweet or semisweet? Dark or white? Chips or nibs? Cocoa powder? With chocolate mousse, it’s not so much about the shape in which your chocolate comes; even a large block can be broken into chunks and melted in the microwave. Still, chocolate wafers have proven to be most convenient for recipes that call for melted chocolate. These small chocolate discs have one more advantage – they don’t contain stabilizers, which makes them better than chocolate chips.
Pick the Best Chocolate for Your Chocolate Mousse
The taste of your dessert can be significantly changed depending on the percentage of cocoa it contains.
Delia Smits, a famous cook claims that chocolate for cooking should have a big percentage of cocoa because the cooking process will dilute the flavor. So, make sure to choose dark chocolate with 75% or more cocoa solids. Its bitter taste will be perfectly balanced by the whipped egg whites or cream in the chocolate mousse recipe, but the complex flavors of the cacao will be the real star of the recipe.
If you are not really a fan of dark chocolate, go for bittersweet (with about 70% cacao) or semisweet (with about 60% cacao).
Cocoa Powder in Chocolate Mousse Recipes
In case you use cocoa powder in your chocolate mousse, you will need to heat it together with milk, some water, icing sugar, and butter to obtain a chocolatey mixture. The powder you use should be unsweetened. Whenever possible opt for ‘natural’ cocoa powder instead of ‘Dutch process.’ The latter is treated with alkaline to reduce the acidity, which makes it react with the other ingredients differently than the natural alternative. Save some of the cocoa for garnish on top of your chocolate mousse as well.
White Chocolate Mousse
Here is a fun fact: white chocolate is not actually chocolate at all. It contains no cocoa, only cocoa butter, and sugar. It is also quite sweet in taste, so you will often see recipes that call for a pinch of salt to ‘tame’ this sweetness a bit. It also pairs well with nuts, so consider them as a garnish for your chocolate mousse. Here is my favorite easy chocolate mousse recipe made with white chocolate.
7 oz. chopped white chocolate
2 egg yolks
2 tablespoons sugar
1 1/4 cup heavy cream
Place the yolks and sugar in a small bowl and whisk. Pour a ¼ cup cream in a saucepan and simmer over low heat, then add it to the yolk and sugar mixture. Stir well and heat until hot. Pour this hot mix into over the chopped chocolate and stir until completely smooth and melted.
In another bowl, whip the remaining one cup of cream until it has stiff peaks. Fold the whipped cream into the white chocolate mixture.
Pour the chocolate mousse into serving cups and refrigerate for about an hour, until set.