It’s ironic that the phrase ‘piece of cake’ signifies something that’s dead easy, as our cultural image of a piece of cake is based on the layer cake, which requires multiple steps, a light touch, and at least a little bit of decorative talent. Chocolate mousse on the other hand, associated with restaurant meals and special occasions, is a piece of cake to make.
This mousse is complicated by the addition of caramel, but even that is easy, once you’ve learned the trick of it. In fact, making caramel is a lot like making brown butter. When you know how to make it, you want to add it to everything. And once you’ve added caramel to chocolate mousse, I suspect you’ll want it that way every time.
The only thing that’s not easy about this recipe is having to wait eight hours for the mousse to set. I solved that issue by making it before bed last night. If I’d made it during the day, I wouldn’t have waited nearly that long. As it was, it took a lot of will-power not to eat it for breakfast. Which wouldn’t have been a bad idea, save for the fact that I wanted to wait for some brighter afternoon light for photographs.
I’m so glad we’ve posted about this recipe – I’ll never have to wait for good light again. Now that I know how delicious it is, I don’t think I could have the forbearance. This mousse is wonderfully balanced in its elements – salt, sweet, bitter, and rich. It’s the sort of thing you could bring out in cocktail glasses at a dinner party, but I don’t recommend waiting for an occasion. Spoon it into little pots and enjoy it as a mid-week treat. It will look just as charming and it will be even more satisfying.
Surprisingly, I’ve still got some in the refrigerator to enjoy tomorrow. This recipe could be halved, easily, but I recklessly made an entire batch. At least it gave me the opportunity to use the cute little lids for my Riviera Petit Pot jars. More importantly, I’ll have a decadent treat to distract me from another long day of elevating my sprained foot – an enforced rest is not as relaxing as you might think.
Luckily for you, this is one of the recipes from My Paris Kitchen that’s posted online. Head over to Epicurious and then run to the store for any of the ingredients you don’t have on hand. It takes eight hours to set, so the sooner you get started, the sooner you’ll be enjoying it.