I’ve been spending the last month trying to figure out how to write a post that explains where I’ve been, how I got there and how I’m attempting to crawl out of the general crappiness of it all. And you know what? I can’t. I just can’t do it right now.
Everything I write just ends up sounding muddled and mixed up because to be honest, that’s my head right now. So rather than waiting until that day when it all does make sense to me and I can articulate that to you all, that post is going to have to wait for another day, week, month, year, whatever. Instead, I’m sorry I disappeared. Let’s cook some shit, shall we?
A couple of years ago, I was in Asheville and had a chocolate truffle with olive oil in it. It planted a seed in my brain. When I was looking for a dessert to make for our anniversary this past November, I went searching for something that combined chocolate and olive oil. Chocolate mousse with olive oil? Sign me up.
I like this better than chocolate mousse with heavy cream. Rather than diluting the chocolate with the cream, the olive oil gives it unctuousness galore with a heavy duty chocolate punch. In choosing an olive oil for this, I wouldn’t pick one with an overly grassy or bitter taste.
I’ve made this several times now. I’ve subbed in generic triple sec and even orange juice for the Cointreau. I’ve made this with the brewed espresso, double strength coffee or with one tablespoon of espresso powder added to hot water. I’ve made it with premium olive oil and my everyday olive oil. It’s been amazing every time.
Just a note – this recipe does include raw eggs which have the potential to carry Salmonella. I live on the edge and eat raw cookie dough, cake batter and this mousse with reckless abandon but I do use fresh, local eggs to lower the risk. If this makes you too nervous, pasteurized raw eggs can be found at a lot of grocery stores.
Tonight for Valentine’s Day, Marcus and I will be preparing a lovely dinner. We’ll be serving this mousse. And we’ll be patching the walls in our front bedroom. May your Valentine’s Day be as full of love (and lack the sweat equity) as those walls. Happy Valentine’s day everyone.
Olive Oil Chocolate Mousse
Adapted from The James Beard Foundation
8 servings (if you have lots of restraint. I don’t)
6 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
3 large eggs, separated
2/3 cup powdered sugar (sift this after measuring if it’s really lumpy)
1/4 cup brewed espresso
2 tablespoons liqueur, such as Cointreau
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Melt chocolate in a double-boiler over low heat or alternatively, melt chocolate in a small bowl in the microwave on low power. Let cool.
In a medium bowl using an electric mixer, beat the egg yolks and powdered sugar until smooth and lemon yellow in color. Turn mixer down to low and add the coffee and liqueur. Add melted chocolate and whisk until well mixed. Add olive oil, a quarter cup at a time, and mix well.
In a separate bowl, beat egg whites until foamy and almost stiff. Snicker with loved one over the phrase “beat until stiff” and gently fold the chocolate mixture into the beaten egg whites until thoroughly mixed.
Spoon the mousse into serving bowls (I use individual martini glasses), cover and refrigerate for at least a couple of hours. Serve cold.