I have daily cravings for chocolate that have nothing to do with being pregnant. I grew up in Belgium, the home of waffles, moules frites, beer and chocolate. And although I do, since living in Switzerland, appreciate some milk chocolates, I remain a purist at heart thanks to my Belgian upbringing. Very dark, bitter, light chocolate was my first love.
And you never forget your first love.
Although I happily eat a couple of squares of good-quality dark chocolate as they are, sometimes I find there is a very specific way of consuming chocolate that I am craving. Recently, it has been chocolate mousse. Being pregnant, I am obviously not allowed raw egg, which rules out most homemade and restaurant mousses. And the list of the ingredients on shop-bought ones tend to make me cringe (just take a look at the ingredients in this one!), especially since they never even taste close to the yummy-ness of homemade ones.
A few weeks ago, when helping my parents move house, I made us some of Nigella’s mouth-wateringly good “Instant Chocolate Mousse“, my mother-in-law’s favourite mousse recipe (and so one of my husband’s nostalgic foods), which contains no eggs. If you want an indulgent chocolate mousse, this is the one to make!
However, when reaching for the chocolate the other day and realizing what I really wanted was it in mousse-form, I was in the mood for something lighter, and didn’t have the ingredients for Nigella’s mousses anyway. And since I am trying hard to stick to “Eating from the Pantry” outside of our set meal plan this month, I found myself at a loss as to how to create this dessert with so few ingredients on hand.
But after a good scour through my Pinterest boards, I rediscovered my French roots in a recipe I have made once before but had forgotten about: “Chocolate Chantilly”.
Hervé This, a chemist employed by the French government as a gastromer who experiments with food to explore the myths and truths regarding cooking techniques (only in France!), discovered something amazing: that although water is usually considered the enemy of chocolate, when it is melted with chocolate and whisked continuously while cooling quickly, the two actually work together beautifully to create a chocolate mousse. The purest chocolate mousse you will ever taste.
It is without a doubt both the easiest, healthiest and the best chocolate mousse recipe I have ever had. And it is very easy to adapt. If this recipe is not sweet enough for you, you can easily add in a little sugar or natural sweetener to dissolve as you heat the water. And I enjoy adding a little vanilla extract or vanilla bean to the recipe. You could even add a little salt or a dollop of whipped cream to the top once you are finished. Experiment – it’s fun!
And are you ready for the best bit?
It takes less than 10 mins to make!
Adapted from this recipe.
120g dark chocolate (at least 70%)
Ice and a little cold water, for the ice bath
1. Place ice cubes at the bottom of a mixing bowl with a little cold water, then place a smaller mixing bowl in it so it rests on the ice.
2. Heat the water a little in a saucepan then add the chocolate and stir until it is just melted.
3. Pour mixture into the smaller mixing bowl and whisk continuously until the chocolate thickens and starts holding the ripples, but before it becomes the consistency of thickly whipped cream (if it gets to this point, there is a way to save it – see here for instructions).
4. Pour into ramekins and eat immediately, or leave out for a short while (try to consume within a couple of hours – trust me, this is not difficult!). Do not refrigerate.