Dark Chocolate Mousse is an easy and impressive dessert. Perfect for entertaining, as it can be made in advance, does not require reheating, and lends itself very well to individual portions. With a smooth luxurious texture and rich dark chocolate taste that is not overly sweet, dark chocolate mousse with fresh whipped cream is a perfect treat to finish off even the most over indulgent of meals!
I found this recipe years ago on the Bon Appetit website and have been using it ever since. Yes, there are a few steps that can make it seem complicated, melting chocolate over a double boiler, whipping egg whites and whipped cream. BUT while it might require a little more dirty dishes that making if you were making cookies, none of these steps are actually difficult. You can do this!! Just read instructions carefully, and follow these tips to ensure success!
But if you follow the tips I outline below, you should have success with the recipe and a beautiful, luscious chocolate mousse dessert!
BEST CHOCOLATE FOR CHOCOLATE MOUSSE
If you want a truly chocolate-y chocolate mousse, use a bittersweet dark chocolate, anywhere from 62% to 70% cocoa.
For this chocolate mousse I used bought the 1 pounder brick from Trader Joes. It’s 70% cocoa Belgian chocolate worked marvelously and the price can’t be beat!! I had a lot of leftover chocolate too, as the recipe only call for 6 oz. Each square is 1 oz, so simple break off 6 squares and roughly chop it up into smaller pieces so it will melt faster.
TIPS FOR CHOCOLATE MOUSSE SUCCESS
As I said before, this isn’t too complicated.. but there are a few little nuances you should know about the individual steps. Here are some tips to help you be successful with this recipe:
Separate eggs when cold, but whip at room temp: This recipe requires egg separating, and while the eggs will whip better if they are room temperature, eggs separate easiest when they are right out of the fridge. Quite the conundrum, yet there is an easy solution! So separate the eggs first, and then let them sit at room temp for several minutes.
Use a Thermometer AND Whisk: In step # 2, you will combine the egg yolk, espresso, and sugar in heat safe bowl over gently boiling water. The is your double boiler. It’s important to (1) whisk constantly (2) use a thermometer to measure when to stop. If you don’t have a candy thermometer, a meat thermometer will do. And if you don’t have either- BUY ONE because a meat thermometer is a kitchen necessity.
Finely chop chocolate: Huge chunks will take longer to melt. Since you are adding the chocolate to the heated egg yolks off heat, you want to make sure they melt quickly so that your heated yolk mixture doesn’t cool before the chocolate melts.
Whip Your Egg White Before Cream: Egg whites will refuse to whip properly if there is any residual fat in the bowl or bowl beaters you are using. So go ahead and whip the egg whites before you make the whip cream, assuming you are using same electric mixer or hand held beaters. Also be sure that there are no bits of yolk in the egg whites. This will also prevent the whipping into peaks.
Cold is best for whipped cream: After you have stiffened the egg whites and transferred to a separate bowl or container, wash and place mixer bowl and whisk attachment in freezer for about 5-10 minutes to chill the tools. Using cold heavy cream and chilled containers helps to emulsify the fat globules emulsify faster and stay emulsified longer when cold. Also please note that you are making 2 separate whipped creams for this recipe, one if for the actual chocolate mouse, and won’t have added sugar or vanilla. The second is for the topping which will need a little sweetness and vanilla extract to make it taste like a traditional whipped cream topping.
Fold, don’t stir, egg whites and whipped cream: Chocolate mousse needs air to make it fluffy. When adding the egg whites and whipped cream, do it gently! If you rapidly stir in those ingredients you will loose the air that you just took all that time incorporating. Be patient and gentle.
Dark Chocolate Mousse with Fresh Whipped Cream
Dark Chocolate Mousse
- ½ cup chilled heavy cream
- 4 large egg yolks
- ¼ cup brewed espresso or strong coffee room temperature
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons sugar divided
- 6 ounces semisweet chocolate 60–72% cacao, chopped
- 2 large egg whites
- 1 cup chilled heavy cream
- 2 tbsp sugar
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
Dark Chocolate Mousse
- Using an electric mixer, beat egg whites in a medium bowl on medium speed until foamy. With mixer running, gradually beat in remaining 1 Tbsp. sugar. Increase speed to high and beat until stiff peaks form. Transfer to mixing bowl, cover and chill.
- Combine egg yolks, espresso, salt, and 2 Tbsp. sugar in a heatproof bowl. Set over a saucepan of gently simmering water. Be sure that the bowl is not touching the boiling water.
- Cook, whisking constantly, until mixture is lighter in color and almost doubled in volume and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the mixture registers 160°. This will take about 3 minutes.
- Remove bowl from heat. Add chocolate and whisk until melted and mixture is smooth. Let sit, whisking occasionally, until room temperature.
- Using electric mixer with whisk attachment, beat ½ cup heavy cream to medium peaks. Transfer to mixing bowl, cover and chill.
- Fold egg whites into chocolate mixture in 2 additions; fold reserved whipped cream into mixture just to blend.
- Divide mousse among 5 teacups or 4-oz. ramekins. Chill until firm, at least 2 hours.
Fresh Whipped Cream
- Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip the heavy cream. Start slowly and add sugar, and vanilla extract once cream has thickened a bit. Turn up speed medium-high until stiff peaks form, about 3-4 minutes.