Spain happens to be the first country in Europe to experience the enjoyment of cacao fruit upon arrival back from the new world. Chocoholics were born in Iberia immediately.
Barcelona has a deep-rooted history in chocolate since the invention of the first chocolate making machine in 1780 was developed here. The city's love of chocolate is apparent by all chocolatier shops one will come in contact with. Mountains of bonbons filling stands, chocolate pastries served at breakfast to the old-time favourites such as fancy confections, and hot chocolate is commonplace all throughout Spain.
The rest of Europe was introduced to chocolate by the Spanish. Its neighbours to the north have been cooking with chocolate since the early 17th century. However, the origins of chocolate mousse are relatively unknown. Is it French, Spanish or Belgium? White chocolate was introduced after WWI and has quickly become an addition to the Spaniard's love of sweets.
White mousse has become a popular dessert in Spain. Still, it is served with a twist by adding assorted toppings to make the most uncomplicated recipes unique. Spanish households are using various syrups, figs and fruits (such as persimmon, strawberries and peaches) to add as a topping to the white chocolate mousse serving. It is an anything strikes your fancy for a topping so get creative. Here is the recipe and several different toppings to try with white choclate or tradional mousse.
Ingredients (4 people)
½ lb of white chocolate
2 tbsp cognac 2 eggs separated 3 desert spoonfuls of milk ½ cup of sugar 2 tsp gelatin powder dissolved 1 lemon
1 cup whipped cream
1. Break the chocolate up into pieces and put it cognac and the milk in heat proof glass bowl. Place the bowl over a pot of boiling water and heat for 3 minutes while stirring constantly
2. In a small heatproof bowl, place in 1 tbsp of boiling water and sprinkle in the gelatin. Stir until dissolved.
3. Beat the egg yolks in a bowl with the sugar. Then add the white chocolate mixture and dissolved gelatin and stir well until it forms a creamy-like texture. Place aside
4. Beat the egg whites until stiff with a few drops of lemon.
5. Once the chocolate mixture is cool, stir in the beaten egg whites. Stir gently, by using a wooden spoon or spatula. Try not to break the egg whites foam.
6. Whip the cream with 2 tablespoons of sugar and add the mousse. Stir in a circling motion, trying for continued fluffy texture.
7. Place in dessert bowls or glasses, cover with plastic wrap and chill thoroughly before serving
Optional and Interesting Toppings to Try
Mango Tostado - Toasted Mango
1 ripe mango 2 tablespoons olive oil Spoonful of sugar
1. In a nonstick skillet add oil and sugar.
2. Add slice mango and toast for a few minutes.
3. Before serving, garnish the white mousse with the toasted slices of mango.
Pomelos en Almibar – Grapefruit in Syrup
2/3 cups sugar
1 cup of water
2 tbsp brandy
1 piece of lemon peel
Cherries for garnishing
1. Peel the grapefruit and cut into sections and cutting the white pith away. Place into the refrigerator to chill.
2. Put the sugar, water, brandy and lemon peel and cook in a saucepan for 5 minutes.
3. Chill the mixture for about an hour and then add the grapefruit.
4. Place the topping on the mousse with cherries.