This past Sunday my wonderful husband turned 34! To celebrate he wanted to have dinner at home, so I let him pick the menu. Of course he picked Mexican so his birthday menu consisted of nachos, Tex-Mex Chicken with Chiles and Cheese and his favorite, chocolate mousse. We kept the food simple and delicious.
With simple and delicious being my main focus I picked a dessert that could be made ahead of time. To add a little somethin’ somethin’, I took a slice of poundcake and spread some strawberry butter (that I got from the Amish market) and then put a scoop of chocolate mousse on top. The result was uh-mazing! The buttery poundcake with the rich chocolate and the hint of strawberries was a perfect combination.
2 cups chilled heavy cream
4 large egg yolks
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
7 oz fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), chopped
Strawberry Butter or Jam
Poundcake cut into slices (I used the frozen Sara Lee brand)
Strawberries for garnish
Heat 3/4 cup cream in a 1-quart heavy saucepan until hot. Whisk together yolks, sugar, and a pinch of salt in a metal bowl until combined well, then add hot cream in a slow stream, whisking until combined. Transfer mixture to saucepan and cook over moderately low heat, stirring constantly, until it registers 160°F on thermometer. Pour custard through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl and stir in vanilla.
Melt chocolate in a double boiler or a metal bowl set over a pan of simmering water (or in a glass bowl in a microwave at 50 percent power 3 to 5 minutes), stirring frequently. Whisk custard into chocolate until smooth, then cool.
Beat remaining 1 1/4 cups cream in a bowl with an electric mixer until it just holds stiff peaks. Whisk one fourth of cream into chocolate custard to lighten, then fold in remaining cream gently but thoroughly.
Take a slice of poundcake and spread the strawberry butter/jam on one side. Top with the chocolate mousse and garnish with fresh strawberries.