Midwinter has arrived in Australia: the nights dip to freezing point and morning frost thickly covers the ground around our home. I seek comfort after dinner in a luscious, decadent dessert made with organic 70% cocoa dark chocolate, infused with a hint of Cointreau. For a hidden silky discovery, I dollop salted caramel into the base of the serving glass.
Hint: it’s important to be very gentle when stirring and folding this mixture.
75g organic 70% cocoa dark chocolate, broken into small pieces
1 1/3 tbs water
10g unsalted butter, chopped, room temperature
1 tsp Cointreau
2 small eggs
2 tbs salted caramel (the best ones are found in your local deli or market)
Put chocolate pieces and water into a heatproof bowl over a pan of gently simmering water: do not allow base of bowl to touch water. Leave chocolate to melt gradually, occasionally briefly stirring gently. Turn off heat. Stir and slowly gently for 5 minutes. Remove bowl, stir in butter and Cointreau until well combined. At this stage mixture should be smooth and silky.
Separate eggs and whisk whites until stiff peaks form.
Beat yolks into partly cooled chocolate mixture until well incorporated: mixture should now be thickened, smooth and glossy.
Fold in one third of egg whites to loosen mixture a little, then very gently fold in remaining egg whites until fully incorporated, but still light and aerated.
Place 2 martini glasses on a tray lined with a towel to prevent slippage. Place a tbs of salted caramel into base of each glass. Gently ease half mousse into each glass, use back of spoon to level tops.
Allow to set in fridge for one hour.
To serve: place glass on a napkin lined serving plate, garnish with a berry coulis or fresh fruit if desired.