Friday, July 20, 2012

Faux Mousse

I made up a dessert the other day. I decided to call it Faux Mousse because it's not made like actual mousse, but does contain cream. If you have a better idea for a name, please leave it in the comments! What follows is sort of a recipe. I didn't measure or write anything down, so these are my best guesses.

Aren't they cute? I didn't have any special little glass dishes made for holding Faux Mousse desserts, so I used punch cups that go with a lovely cut-glass punch bowl I never use. We have three flavors: Bailey's Irish Cream, Chocolate, and Strawberry.


First I crushed 6 graham crackers (the whole thing, the rectangle shape just as it comes out of the package) using the food processor. I microwaved about 2 Tbs of butter, stirred in the graham crackers, and spooned the mixture into the punch cups evenly. Once these were refrigerated, the butter got cold again and made it pretty hard for you to get your spoon through it until it had thawed a bit. I would recommend a thinner layer of graham cracker crust. These were almost an inch thick because of how narrow the bottom of the cups is, so maybe half an inch would be better. I smooshed the mixture down with the bottom of a measuring cup so it would be compacted.

I microwaved about a quarter of a cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips next, stirring it every thirty seconds. To get it a little smoother, I added just a tiny blop of olive oil. You could use another oil of your choice here or just skip it all together. I just didn't think the chocolate would spread nicely enough on its own. Again, I divided it (more or less) evenly between the cups and smoothed it out with a small spatula.

Here are my flavors all ready to go along with the whipped cream. I ended up using maybe 1 3/4 a cup of heavy whipping cream and just a splash of vanilla extract, then using a hand mixer until it formed stiff peaks. (I whipped it a little too long, actually, until it almost started to turn into butter! Don't do that. I added a little more cream, though, and that softened it back up.)

I took about eight or ten whole frozen strawberries, thawed (in the microwave--I didn't plan well enough ahead to set them out beforehand) and pureed those in the food processor. Then I plopped in about an equal amount of whipped cream and blended it gently together with a spatula.

I did the same for the chocolate flavored Faux Mousse--this was about a cup of chocolate pudding leftover from the previous night's dessert.

As for the Bailey's Irish Cream, I simply poured 3 or 4 Tbs into the remaining whipped cream and gave it another quick blend with the hand mixer.

Using a regular table spoon, I plopped the whipped cream mixtures into the punch cups. Miraculously, there was just enough to fill two each even though I'd done nothing but guess at measurements! I garnished the Bailey's with a little sprinkle of a Holiday Spice Mix I made for Christmas, but you could use cinnamon, nutmeg, crushed candy cane.... whatever you think would go well with Bailey's. For the chocolate, I drizzled chocolate syrup on top, and I'd reserved about a tablespoon of the strawberry puree to top the strawberry Faux Mousse.

Next: spend the rest of the afternoon doing dishes! (Or put most of them in the dishwasher, huzzah!)

And there you have it! Six little individually-sized desserts in three flavors. Great for a dinner party, I think. The strawberry was rather tart, especially with the puree on top, so unless you like that sort of thing, you might add a teaspoon or so of sugar to the puree before you mix it with the whipped cream. The chocolate was delicious. I also liked the Bailey's, though because it wasn't mixed with anything besides just the whipped cream, it was very.... fluffy. 

These kept fine in the fridge for a day after I made them, but on the second day they started to get a bit of a skin on top. It wasn't nasty or anything, just not idea. I recommend making these, chilling them for about an hour (or until they're needed), and serving them that same night.


If you are the sort of person who likes real measurements, here's the best I can do:

Faux Mousse--
-1 3/4 cups heavy whipping cream + splash of vanilla extract -- whip and divide by 3
-8-10 whole frozen strawberries
-1 cup chocolate pudding
-3-4 Tablespoons Bailey's Irish Cream
-1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
-6 whole graham crackers + 2 Tablespoons melted butter