Milk Chocolate Caramel Mousse Recipe (Just 4 Happy Ingredients!)
This chocolate caramel mousse looks like the one you can order in a restaurant – just perfect! You don’t need to have any special, pro-cooking skills in order to make this mousse.
I’ve noticed over time that most mousse recipes are essentially the same: melt chocolate or fruit, fold in cream. That’s why it’s crucial that the chocolate is of great quality. It’s the difference between a mousse that stuns and a mousse that bores.
Here’s a recipe that I’ve read in the New York Times, long, long time ago. Anyway, it’s had its share of modifications and tinkering. I love the combo of caramel and milk chocolate used here, but feel free to substitute dark chocolate.
Milk Chocolate Caramel Mousse
makes 6 servings
- 4 oz. milk chocolate
- 5 oz. (1/3 cup) granulated sugar
- 5 oz./42 grams (3 tbsp.) unsalted butter
- 12 fluid oz. (1 1/2 cups) heavy cream, divided into 8 oz. (1cup) and 4 oz. (1/2 cup)
Just 4 happy ingredients!
- Start by making the caramel: sprinkle a thin layer of sugar in a lightly colored-pan set over medium-high heat. (A light pan will help you gauge the color of the caramel.)
- In a minute or 2, it starts to melt. Don’t bother to stir or anything.
- Sprinkle more sugar. The heat of the already melted sugar will start melting the new addition right away.
- Keep adding until all your sugar is in. This may take 2 or 3 additions. It will melt quickly and the edges will color faster than the center. Swirling the pan around helps get the sugar to caramelize more evenly.
- Now you must work quickly to avoid burning the sugar. Sprinkle in the butter lumps, and whisk them in.
- Now, add the 1/2 cup of cream, but GRADUALLY. The cream will sputter when it comes in contact with the hot sugar. Some of the sugar will seize and harden a little, but keep whisking. It will dissolve.
- When you get a nice caramel, all whisked up and smooth – remove the pan from heat and let it rest until we get to it.
- Meanwhile, take the remaining 1 cup of cream, and whip it to soft peak. You can see trails in the cream, but it’s still kind of droopy and doesn’t hold a peak.
- Pop this bowl of cream in the fridge to keep it chilled while we melt chocolate.
- Fill a pot with water and bring it to a boil. Turn the heat down to low, and rest a bigger bowl filled with your chocolate over said pot. This is our faux double boiler. If you have a real double boiler that’s been waiting for this special occasion, use it now!
- Don’t let any water get into your chocolate or you will witness a grainy mess. Gently let it melt, stirring occasionally to help it along.
- Once it’s completely melted, remove from the heat, and stir in the caramel.
- You will notice the texture is mottled and dull, like this. Don’t stop here.
- Grab a whisk, and work up some elbow grease. You’re trying to create an emulsion. Whisk in a rapid, circular motion like you’re trying to rev up an engine.
- Start from the center and whisk outward, in concentric circles. The mix should end up glossy and very smooth. This will make the texture of the mousse luxuriously creamy.
- Make sure the contents are lukewarm or cooler. (A chance to taste test, in my book.)
- If the mix is still hot, let it sit until it’s cool enough. Scoop about 1/3 of the whipped cream into the bowl and gently fold it in. This will help lighten the dense chocolate and ensure better incorporation of the whipped cream.
- It doesn’t have to be 100% incorporated yet. Add the rest of the whipped cream and gently fold that in too, just until all the cream is incorporated.
- The final mousse should be quite loose, but with the body. It should look like a very thick chocolate drink.
- Finally, pour it into glasses or ramekins and refrigerate for at least 5 hours or overnight in order to allow it to set up.
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