Dessert

FROZEN MOCHA MOUSSE

Makes 12 mini servings

This dessert is quick, easy and must be made in advance. It is a lovely finish to an elegant meal. I like to serve this dessert in 1/4 cup size ramekins (pots de crème).


ingredients

• 4 ounces high quality imported semi-sweet chocolate (I like to use Scharffen Berger’s 70% cacao) – 2 ounces broken into small pieces and 2 ounces chopped finely. (See Note 1)
• 2 tablespoons instant espresso powder
• 4 large eggs separated, at room temperature (discard 2 yolks, see Note 2)
• 1/2 cup heavy cream, chilled
• 1/4 generous cup sugar

preparation

1. Place 2 ounces of the chocolate, espresso powder and 2 tablespoons hot water in the top part of a double boiler. Cover and set over simmering water. Stir occasionally until chocolate is melted.

2. Whisk in 2 egg yolks until well combined. 

3. Remove the top part of double boiler.

4. Beat egg whites until frothy. Gradually add sugar while still beating the egg whites until the whites are stiff.

5. In a chilled bowl (see Note 3) beat cream until it holds soft peaks.

6. With a rubber spatula fold one third of the whites into the chocolate until well combined. Than reverse the process, fold the chocolate mixture into the whites, add the chopped chocolate and the cream. Combine gently.

7. Spoon the mousse evenly into the ramekins. Cover with cling wrap and freeze for at least 3 hours, or overnight.

To serve

Take out ramekins from freezer and leave for 10 minutes in refrigerator before serving, if you like to serve this dessert cold. If you prefer it more like a mousse then leave it in the refrigerator longer.

Note

1. I use a mini food processor to chop the chocolate finely.

2. In order for the egg yolks not to break, separate the eggs when they are cold, but beat the whites when they are at room temperature.

3. It is easier to beat heavy cream in a chilled metal bowl rather than a glass bowl.  Keep the bowl in the freezer for a short time until it is cold.

 
 

Ricotta Flan with Raspberry Sauce

Makes 8 to 10 servings.

I like to serve this light dessert with an easy-to-make raspberry sauce and fresh raspberries.  You can bake it a day in advance and refrigerate it.  It is wonderful warm, cold, or at room temperature.  This recipe first appeared in my cookbook, Helen Nash's New Kosher Cuisine.


Flan

Ingredients

• 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, for greasing the pan
• 1 cup blanched almonds
• 4 large eggs, at room temperature
• 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
• Grated zest of 2 lemons
• One 15-ounce container ricotta cheese, at room temperature
• Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting the flan
• Fresh raspberries, for garnish

 

Preparation

1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease a 10 x 1½ inch flan dish flan dish with the butter.

2. Roast the almonds in a toaster oven at 350 degrees for 5 minutes, until golden. Cool. Finely grind them in a food processor.

3. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, adding the sugar gradually until well combined. Add the vanilla, lemon zest, ricotta, and almonds. Mix well.

4. Pour the mixture into the prepared dish and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until the center feels slightly springy to the touch. Place on a wire rack to cool.

Raspberry Sauce

Ingredients

• One 12-ounce (340 g) package unsweetened frozen raspberries, defrosted
• 1 tablespoon Cognac (optional)
• 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar, or to taste

 

Preparation

Puree the raspberries in a blender until smooth. Strain through a medium-mesh sieve. Push the solids through the sieve with the back of a spoon to obtain as much puree as possible. Stir in the Cognac. Sweeten to taste with sugar.

To serve: Spoon the raspberry sauce on individual plates and place slices of the flan on top. Dust with confectioners’ sugar and garnish with fresh raspberries.

 
 

MOCHA PECAN BALLS

Makes about 6 dozen balls.

If you like pareve sweets with a touch of coffee and nuts, you will love these cookies.  This recipe first appeared in my cookbook, Helen Nash's New Kosher Cuisine.


Ingredients

• 1/4 pound (113 g) pecans
• 8 tablespoons (120 g) unsalted margarine, at room temperature
• 1/4 cup (50 g) granulated sugar
• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 1 1/2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
• 2 tablespoons imported unsweetened cocoa powder
• Scant 1 cup (120 g) unbleached all-purpose flour
• 3 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar

Preparation

1. Chop the pecans in a food processor until medium-fine.

2. Place the margarine in the bowl of an electric stand mixer. Using the balloon whisk attachment, cream the margarine at medium speed. Gradually add the granulated sugar and beat about 5 minutes, until the mixture is pale and bubbles appear. Add the vanilla, espresso powder, and cocoa powder and stir to combine. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as you go along. Using a rubber spatula, add the flour and pecans and combine.

3. Put a level teaspoon of dough in your palm and roll it into a smooth ball, then place each one on an ungreased baking sheet. Continue making the balls until all the mixture has been used. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).

4. Bake the cookies for 12 minutes, or until they are just firm to the touch. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes.

5. Place the confectioners’ sugar on a piece of wax paper and roll the warm balls in the sugar until they are coated well. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Sprinkle with any remaining confectioners’ sugar.

Note

Mocha pecan balls freeze beautifully. Place them side by side in an air-tight plastic container, with wax paper between the layers.