Eggless chocolate mousse: help!
Posted: 15 December 2008 12:51 AM   [ Ignore ]
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In another thread, we were discussing bite-sized chocolate desserts to try, and using the eggless chocolate mousse from PPB (pg 460) as a filling was suggested. For what I’m trying to accomplish, I don’t need a full 4-cup batch of it, so I tried scaling it back to one cup by using 2 oz of chocolate (the same 70% Valrhona called for in the recipe) and 2/3 cup of cream. I did everything with the food processor like called for in the recipe and then stashed it in the refrigerator for six hours. However, when I pulled it out, it was really, really solid and didn’t want to whip up. Has anyone made this before? Should it be solid when you try to whip it? If not, then I presume I should have chilled it for less time, since there was less to chill. Can someone describe what the consistency should be when I try to whip it, as then I can check periodically while chilling the next batch and whip it at the right time. What I have right now is edible, but it doesn’t look quite right and the texture isn’t quite right, so I figure I can use it to fill odd pieces of pastry that are leftover, but I’d like to get this right for the bulk of things.

Thanks in advance for any help.

Mitch

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Posted: 15 December 2008 09:07 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Mitch, sorry you are running into trouble!  I feel your pain…

I have not yet made this mousse, but have been wanting to try it.  You can remelt what you have (over a double boiler until smooth- don’t stir too vigorously or heat too much) and as you suggest try chilling for a shorter length of time.  Sorry, I don’t know the exact thickness of the mixture you’re looking for here. 

The recipe says for at least 6 hours, which sort of implies that more than six isn’t really a problem, though, which makes me wonder if the mixture is needing a tad more cream. 

You could always make the full batch, and freeze the extra for another time.

Good luck!

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Posted: 15 December 2008 12:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Mitch, Rose’s version of this mousse is the light whipped ganache on p.559 of the PPB. It says not to chill too long or the mixture will be too stiff to whip- sounds like that’s what happened.  It also directs the vanilla to be stirred into the mixture just before whipping, which makes me think it must still be fairly liquid in order to do that.

I think the main difference between the two versions is the sugar content of the chocolate.

Good luck (again!)

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Posted: 15 December 2008 02:29 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Hi Mitch. For many years, I had trouble with the Light Whipped Ganache Filling, which is a smiliar proportion of ingredients to what you describe. (In the light ganache recipe on p. 268 of Cake Bible, it is 2.6 oz of chocolate for 2/3 cup of cream, making the mixture even stiffer when cold than what you ended up with). It used to be that I would chill the mixture too much, then try to whip it, and it would become grainy-looking. Finally, I figured out how to make it smooth and the right consistency. Here’s the secret: After you’ve combined the ingredients in the food processor, transfer the mixture to a metal or ceramic bowl. Submerse in enough ice water so that the ice water comes about halfway up the outside of the bowl of ganache. Stir frequently, scraping the sides of the bowl, until the mixture reaches about 50 degrees F. At that temperature, the mixture will thicken noticeably and the scraper will start to leave tracks. Using a balloon whisk, beat just until the mixture makes soft peaks. Remove from the ice water and proceed with your recipe.

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Posted: 15 December 2008 04:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Thanks, Julie and Christine! I re-melted the mixture over a double boiler until just smooth and at that point it was in the state that Christine described, so I tried whipping it up by hand using a balloon whisk. (Went through two whisks in the process, since the first one was ill-suited to the task. Oh, the adventures of cooking in a friend’s kitchen!) Turned out much more mousse-like and suitable for the task at hand. I might need to mix up another batch, and I’ll definitely not let it sit in the refrigerator too long this time!

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Posted: 16 December 2008 02:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Mitch, glad the whipped ganache is working better for you!  For what it’s worth, Sherry Yard specifies in most of her ganache recipes that the chilled texture should be like peanut butter, then whip by hand with a whisk to barely soft peaks, like mustard.

Hope you are able to post pics, I’d love to see the bite-sized napoleons!

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Posted: 16 December 2008 02:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Julie - 16 December 2008 06:06 PM

Mitch, glad the whipped ganache is working better for you!  For what it’s worth, Sherry Yard specifies in most of her ganache recipes that the chilled texture should be like peanut butter, then whip by hand with a whisk to barely soft peaks, like mustard.

Hope you are able to post pics, I’d love to see the bite-sized napoleons!

Oh, there will definitely be pics. The party’s hostess always takes lots of pictures of the food, and she’s a great photographer, so they should be really nice pictures, too grin I hope to get them posted in the other thread Wednesday evening.

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