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Mousse Technique

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
I must begin by confessing I am by no means a professional chef, but when I do learn how to cook things I like to learn the method and mode that's most professional. I purchased the CIA's textbook and, when I have an opportunity between my two college majors I give something a try. Most of it has been pretty easy (braising and sauteeing things) but I went ahead and gave mousse a try today. While "The Professional Chef 7th Edition" gives a fine recipe, I want to know why it has me do what I do, and whether this recipe can applied with any flexibility. More or less this it how it goes

Melt 300g of chocolate with 45 g of butter.

In a separate bowl over a hot water bath mix 5 egg yolks with half an ounce of water and 30g of sugar. Once the mixture reaches 145F take it off and whisk until cool and forms ribbons.

In yet another bowl over hot water add 5 egg whites and 30g of sugar and whisk until it reaches 145F, take off and whisk until soft peaks form.

Take egg white mix and fold into egg yolk mix. Fold in chocolate-butter mix. Fold in 240g of heavy cream. Done.

Is this the conventional recipe everyone else uses for mousse? The 145F shock to the egg whites seems unnecessary, as every other internet based recipe seems to simply whip up the egg whites the the standard pinch of salt and sugar. So is that temp raise just for ridding the eggs of potential bugs?

And does the same apply for the yolk heat shock? The whisking of the yolks seems to be more common, kind of like a sabayon (for the purpose of thickening that is) but in actuality the yolks are only on there for 15-20 seconds before they hit 145F.

So is there something here that I don't quite understand? And is there any difference in order of how things are folded into each other?

Thank you for your time.

Garrett B.
post #2 of 4
Yep this is a very good mousse. You're making a meringue, folding it into the chocolate. This makes a marquise. Fold in the cream, this turns the marquise into mousse.

There is an easier way to make chocolate mousse. Equal parts by weight of cream and chocolate. Melt the chocolate in the cream. This makes a ganache. Same amount again of cream, whip to desired consistency, fold into the ganache. You can add extract of your choice to the ganache. Every male of college age needs to know how to do this.

BTW my kid is named Garrett. :)
post #3 of 4
Good morning. To answer your question of why we heat the egg-whites is to give it more volume & more stability... this technique is known as "A SWISS MERINGUE". It is done by whisking room temp. whites & over a BAIN MARIE to a temp. of between 125 degrees to 145 degrees.
Good luck in your baking & have a nice day.

post #4 of 4

Basically I believe you are pasturizing the "raw" egg ingredients...

Then you whip them to add air (the merangue thing) and fold the various ingredients into each other (gently of course) to add volume to the total mass. The chocolate is cooled so as not to cook the eggs. The method I learned was to fold the cooled whipped chocolate into the whipped egg yolks, then folding whites into that and whipped cream into THAT...<whew! :confused: > Some techniques are definitely better than others. I haven't played with that many variations and actually the Resort I worked at used raw ingredients instead of the water bath.

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