Lay­ered choco­late mousse

SERVES 6

The Mail on Sunday - You - - Food Annie Bell -

125g dark choco­late (about 70 per cent co­coa) 125g milk choco­late 5 medium eggs sep­a­rated 1 tbsp brandy 50g black cherry jam 1 x 250g tub ri­cotta drained 50g ex­tra thick dou­ble cream 15g golden caster su­gar 1 tsp vanilla ex­tract

l Have ready a 20cm glass serv­ing bowl (or al­ter­na­tively use in­di­vid­ual dishes, as in the pic­ture). Gen­tly melt the two choco­lates in a large bowl set over a pan con­tain­ing a lit­tle sim­mer­ing wa­ter. Al­low to cool to room tem­per­a­ture. Work­ing quickly, beat the egg yolks into the choco­late – the mix­ture will turn grainy – then rapidly beat in the brandy and a ta­ble­spoon of wa­ter when it will be­come smooth and glossy again.

l In an­other large bowl, whisk the egg whites un­til stiff us­ing an elec­tric whisk. Fold two ta­ble­spoons into the choco­late mix­ture to loosen it, then fold in the re­main­der in two goes, as lightly as pos­si­ble.

l Spoon half the choco­late mousse into the serv­ing bowl. Place in the freezer for 20 min­utes to firm up a lit­tle. Spoon the jam on top of the mousse.

l Whiz the ri­cotta, cream, su­gar and vanilla un­til smooth in a food pro­ces­sor. Spoon this over the jam, fol­lowed by the re­main­ing choco­late mousse. Chill overnight un­til set, cov­er­ing with cling­film af­ter a cou­ple of hours. FIN­ISH­ING TOUCH If wished dec­o­rate with choco­late stars and sprin­kles to serve. ➤

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