Friday, May 30, 2014

A Delightful Raspberry Mousse Cake topped with Crunchy Meringues

I invited some of my girl friends over for dinner last night and had prepared a menu of chicken caesar salad (will share that recipe next!) followed by this wonderful raspberry mousse cake. I made this cake with another friend the other week in Helsingør but this time I made the cake a day earlier so it had even longer to set, I topped it off with a drizzle of melted chocolate and a handful of crispy vanilla meringues too!

I have made several of Maja of Chocolat's recipes before and I've always had success with them. She is a lovely Danish dessert blogger and her Gateau Marcel is my favorite! She shares a lot of gluten free recipes as well which I really appreciate and is perfect for when I have gluten free guests over.

Anyways, let's get to the cake shall we?

Raspberry Mousse Cake topped with Crunchy Meringues (slightly adapted from Chocolat)
Fills a 17-19cm spring form pan, enough for 6 to 8 people depending on portion size

For the chocolate cake base:

100 g chopped chocolate, 70% cacao and up
50 g unsalted butter
100 g or 1/2 cup sugar (raw or white sugar works)
2 large eggs

For the raspberry mousse:

300 g raspberries (fresh or frozen)
2 tbsp to just under 1/4 cup sugar (I went towards the higher amount)
1 tbsp vanilla extract, or seeds from 1 vanilla bean
1 to 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
3 gelatin sheets
120 ml or 1/2 cup heavy cream
120 g or 1/2 cup skyr (can substitute with greek yogurt if skyr isn't available for you)

For the meringues (didn't really follow a recipe, basic meringue making guide):

2 large egg whites, at room temperature
100 g or 1/2 cup of white granulated sugar
1 tbsp of vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 175C or 350F. Start with making the chocolate cake base by melting the chocolate with the unsalted better. Maja suggests doing it over a double broiler but I just melt it directly on the stove (over low heat) in a small saucepan, or you can melt it in the microwave as well. When the chocolate and butter has melted and combined, pour the mixture into a medium sized mixing bowl and add the sugar and mix. Crack the two eggs directly into the chocolate cake mixture and beat with a whisk until you get a smooth and glossy batter.  Pour the chocolate batter into your springform, line it with a parchment circle if you wish, and bake for 25 minutes. Let the cake cool completely.

To make the raspberry mousse, make a raspberry puree by pouring your berries, sugar, vanilla extract, and lemon juice into a small sauce pan. Cook the mixture on medium low, until it starts to boil gently. Prepare your gelatin sheets as well by placing them in a bowl of cold water for about 5 minutes. When your raspberry mixture starts to boil, take it off the stove and strain it through a sieve to get rid of the seeds. Pour the liquid from the puree back into the saucepan and warm it up again, until it reaches a slight boil. Wring out your gelatin sheets and stir them into the raspberry sauce. Place the mixture in the fridge for a few minutes while you prepare the rest of the mousse. Whip the heavy cream in a large mixing bowl until you get strong peaks or until you can turn the bowl upside down without anything falling out. Fold in the skyr before pouring the raspberry sauce into the cream mixture and folding again, until everything is combined. Pour the raspberry mousse over the chocolate cake layer and place in the fridge for at least 4 hours and overnight if you have the time.

The meringues can be made before or after the cake has been made. You can store them in an airtight container for up to a week. Simply beat the egg whites with a mixer on high until you reach soft peaks before adding the 1/2 cup of sugar and vanilla extract. Beat for a few more minutes until you get a glossy meringue with stiff peaks. Pipe your meringues onto a lined baking sheet. Bake in a preheated oven at about 80C or 175F for 1 hour and 40 minutes, or until the meringues are firm and dry to the touch and can easily come off the baking sheet. Turn off the oven when the meringues are ready, and cool them in there with the oven door cracked open. Store them in an airtight container until ready to be used or eaten.

To serve the cake, feel free to drizzle some chocolate on top (I used about 50 g of melted semisweet chocolate here). Place in the fridge to set. I didn't place my meringues onto the cake until I was ready to serve it as the moisture in the fridge would have ruined them. Before serving, I dipped the bottoms of my meringues in some melted white chocolate (again, about 50 g) and placed them on top of the cake. I finally topped it off with a dusting of dehydrated raspberries which I crushed into a powder in my mortar.

And that is how you make this delightful raspberry mousse cake! A beautiful, light and refreshing dessert that everyone will enjoy. I mean, the four of us girls finished this whole cake last night! Well, we were nice and saved the fiance a slice, but otherwise, we absolutely devoured it!

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