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Red Chile-Spiked Chocolate Mousse
2 h 35 m
Cheryl & Bill Jamison
“The idea of chile with chocolate still surprises most people, but the duo pairs beautifully in many chocolate desserts. In this silky, luxurious mousse the chile adds a light but bright accent. ”
1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
4 tablespoons water, divided
⅔ cup unsweetened cocoa powder, preferably Dutch-process
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons mild-to-medium New Mexican red chile powder, plus more for garnish
1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
⅛ teaspoon salt
1 large egg
¾ cup low-fat milk
2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
8 teaspoons dried egg whites (see Note), reconstituted according to package directions (equivalent to 4 egg whites)
½ cup packed light brown sugar
½ teaspoon cream of tartar
1Sprinkle gelatin over 2 tablespoons water in a small bowl; set aside.
2Combine cocoa, granulated sugar, chile powder, espresso powder and salt in a large saucepan. Whisk in egg, then milk. Cook over medium-low heat, whisking constantly, until steaming and just beginning to thicken, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and immediately whisk in the softened gelatin, chocolate and vanilla. Stir until the chocolate is melted and fully incorporated.
3Beat egg whites, brown sugar and cream of tartar in a medium bowl with an electric mixer on high speed just until firm peaks form.
4Stir one-fourth of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture until smooth. Fold in the remaining egg whites until fully incorporated. Spoon the mousse into 8 dessert glasses or cups.
5Chill the mousse until set, at least 2 hours. Sprinkle with chile powder, if desired.
Note: Pasteurized dried egg whites are a wise choice in recipes that call for uncooked egg whites. Look for brands like Just Whites in the baking or natural-foods section of most supermarkets.