I still get kitchen-intimidated. It happens when I least expect it… like when I’m trying to satisfy a chocolate mousse craving and I stumble upon a seemingly approachable Food & Wine recipe.
This recipe for extra-creamy Chocolate Mousse is from cronut innovator Dominique Ansel… pastry genius.
Here’s the thing about pastry innovators: they tend to make challenging things look really easy, god bless ’em.
It’s not that mousse is impossible. It’s mostly approachable and 100% delicious but does require some a candy thermometer, egg whites beaten just-so, and well… some self-confidence and guts.
No guts, no chocolate mousse glory.
First we hold our breaths and make the meringue.
Here’s how that goes down in the kitchen:
Egg whites are beaten in a stand mixer at medium speed. Feel free to stand there and zone-out as the egg whites become foamy and frothy. Mark this zone-out as your one and only while making this mousse.
We can’t dilly-dally for too long because we need to make a hot sugar syrup while the egg whites get frothy. Water and sugar are boiled to precisely 240 degrees F while our eggs beat to precisely soft peaks. Yup. Two forms of kitchen science at once. Stay present. Stay in the game. We’ve only just begun.
The hot sugar syrup is drizzled into the soft-peaked eggs and with the mixer on high, our two forms of kitchen science form one glossy, light mound of perfect meringue. Deep breath. We are successful.