Julia Child’s Chocolate Mousse

Chocolate Mousse. Some things just never go out of style. And just when you think they might have…. there’s Julia to pull you back to your senses.

This is THE little black dress of recipes.

Many recipes rely on whipped cream folded in, to give it the characteristic lightness that makes it mousse. This one does not. Instead, the artful use of egg yolks into a sabayon like mixture quite handily does the trick, giving it an ultra smooth, light, fluffy, almost ethereal composition… absolutely everything mousse is meant to be.

I must admit, this was damn fun to make! With numerous bowls and whisks on the go for the various steps, it took me back to the halls of learning, and my culinary education. This is part of why some recipes are classics. While I have made chocolate mousse before, I confess it’s been some years. It was months ago that I saw a video of Julia making it in her early days of TV – right then and there, I knew I would be making it. Having some girlfriends coming for dinner gave me the most perfect excuse.

Julia was the maestro. Always will be. Did she have any idea, I sometimes wonder, just how far ahead of the world she was…???

Julia Child’s Chocolate Mousse

Read the recipe through carefully, so you can properly time the necessary steps. Be patient. Getting the proper texture of each component right, is paramount to success. It does need to chill for at least a few hours and can be poured into whatever size & type of individual dessert serving vessel you like. Would also be smashing as a cake or cupcake filling~

Ingredients & Preparation: (combined for ease!)
6 oz semi-sweet chocolate

1/4 cup rum, orange liqueur, or coffee
In a small pot or bowl set over simmering water, melt the chocolate & liquid of your choice. Stir to combine and set aside – keep slightly warm.
¾ cup sugar
¼ cup strong coffee
Combine the sugar and coffee over low heat – dissolve into a simple syrup. Set aside.
4 egg yolks
In a large bowl, beat yolks for 5 minutes. Then set over a pot of simmering water, drizzle in the coffee/sugar mix and whisk for 5 – 8 minutes until thick (160º on a thermometer). Remove from heat and whisk for several more minutes – it’ll cool down and thicken to the point of a runny mayonnaise. You could do this over a large bowl of ice water – although I found it unnecessary.
4 oz butter, softened
Add the softened butter to the chocolate mix, combining thoroughly.
Then fold the chocolate into the egg yolk mixture.
4 egg whites
Pinch of salt
1 tbsp. sugar
In a large bowl start beating egg whites – start slowly, then add salt. Whip to soft peaks, sprinkle in sugar and whip until shiny.
At this point you should have 2 bowls left – one with the combined chocolate mixture and the whipped egg whites.
Fold about 1/4 of the whites into the chocolate, to lighten.
Fold in the remaining whites, combining gently until no streaks are visible.
Pour into some pretty dishes/bowls/glasses/etc and chill for at least 3 – 4 hours.
Serve as it – it does not need adornment~
**Apologies if the instructions are confusing – I was writing them down as I watched the video. If you look online you’ll find many versions of this – but none quite to this method. Well worth the work and while I found it a little too sweet, my girlfriends loved it! Will make again, using some dark chocolate!

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