Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Valentine's Special: Just a Pinch of Chili Chocolate Mousse

Chocolate mousse is a surprisingly easy "fancy" dessert you can make for your Valentine's dinner. This video recipe shows my favorite basic chocolate mousse recipe, with the addition of a little dash of chipotle pepper - which really does some strange and wonderful things.

If you look back at
the history of chocolate, it was certainly not enjoyed as the sweet treat we think of today. The Maya and Aztecs cultures both used the cacao beans, but they were most often fermented and made into a very bitter drink, often flavored with chili peppers.

So, unless you're dating a 3,000-year-old Mayan Goddess, I suggest something more along the lines of this modern chocolate mousse recipe, which still pays homage to the ancient spicy flavoring. You will be pleasantly surprised by how just a tiny dash of the hot, bittersweet spice brings out the full complexity of the chocolate.

Of course, I know that many of you just won't be able to pull the trigger. It just seems wrong to your culinary sensibilities, and that's all right. It's not really that big a deal. But, in one last attempt to convince you to give it a try, I will tell you that the Aztecs considered this chocolate chili concoction to be quite a powerful aphrodisiac.

If spicy peppers aren’t your thing, you can alter this recipe in more conventional ways with things like orange zest, or extracts like almond, coffee, and mint. One last tip, there's no need to sweeten the whipped cream garnish. The contrast of the plain, rich cream and the sweet, decadent chocolate underneath is a magical mix you don't want to mess with. Enjoy!



Ingredients:
3.5 oz dark chocolate bar, chopped or broken in small pieces (you can get away with
1 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup water, divided (2 tbsp for chocolate, 2 tbsp for egg mixture)
1 tablespoon white granulated sugar
2 large egg yolks
1/8 tsp ground chipotle
very tiny pinch of salt
1/2 cup plus 1 tbsp heavy whipping cream
extra cream and chocolate shavings to garnish, optional


Want to learn the proper technique for "folding," and a delicious breakfast recipe? Check out this video recipe for Lemon Soufflé Pancakes.



* Please help support free video recipes, and visit my new sponsor, MOZO Shoes. Find out why chefs (like me) are buzzing about their great shoes!

96 comments:

Vitasoy said...

That looks soooo good! I think I'll make some tonight. ^^ Thanks for posting this!

Susanna said...

Why does your chocolate have white bits in it?

cc said...

I don't really do deserts. I'm just posting to say I'll be buying from Amazon through your site from now on. I just LOVE it.

Chef John said...

white bits? the whipped cream?

Susanna said...

At 28 second mark, there're only water, butter and chocolate in the bowl; no cream. All those white dandruff-like bits are puzzling.

Anonymous said...

I like chocolate with chili. Its an extra almost smokeyness bite to it. Will definitely try this recipe for your mousse. Was that egg mix warmed over the water bath like a sabayon?

H.Li said...

where can i get a ramican and how much did you get yours for?
probobly spelled it wrong,please correct me!
please email me back with the reply
henryli101@yahoo.com

Chef John said...

any store that sell kitchen stuff will have them or go to amazon http://www.amazon.com/s/179-0849894-8203509?ie=UTF8&keywords=ramekins&index=blended

Chef John said...

kind of a sabayon, but really just to cook the egg a bit vs. trying to get a lot of volume.

Chef John said...

that's just chocolate crumbs reflecting the bright light from the window.

Anonymous said...

sigh. i love you.

Pyrofish said...

A new video 3 days in a row, you've been busy Chef! Good work. All 3 of these are on my to-do-list.

Lauras said...

You are the best John!! Thank you so much!

vepant said...

Yup, must try this tonight.

Thanks Chef!

Sean said...

how much more interesting (ie better) is this mousse with the chipotle as opposed to using cayenne? does the smoke in the chipotle bring more to the experience?

ghanima said...

Mmm...spicy chocolate, one of my all-time favourite, unexpected food pairings. I never make chili without adding cocoa powder to the mix.

Chef John said...

one' hotter, one's smokier - you would have to taste and tell me. i don't do "better" - i do "different"

Diane said...

Chocolate.... and water? -twitch-

Anonymous said...

Chef John, I am so glad I was able to find your video blog through tastespotting. I am now a great fan of your concept. BTW...no egg whites in your chocolate mousse???

John

Chef John said...

thanks! no, i like the denser texture

Anonymous said...

Thanks chef. Inspired as always! Made your pollo en crema and mexican rice last weekend, and that had to be some of the best leftovers ever all mixed together. Wife loved it too.

Had one issue though that I will also have with this recipe tonight -- no chipotle chili powder at the local store. Substituted cayenne with last week's meal, but I imagine the difference will be more pronounced with the mousse. I know, I know - I should experiment and let you know how it turns out. But being valentines day, any advice for the best substitution (e.g., cayenne, regular chili power, other) from the more seasoned palates out there will be much appreciated. Thanks!

Chef John said...

just a pinch of cayenne will work nicely! enjoy.

Maja said...

the recipe is amazing! Love the chili in it!

O'Griffin said...

The white specs someone mentioning, I'm not seeing them, maybe a reflection of the light? Anyway- I wish I had followed this recipe, I did it my own way ,turned out like chocolate grits. Next time I'll do it Chef John's way.

O'Griffin said...

I just made chocolate mousse from a different instruction guide. I wish I had found this one. My chocolate mousse turned out like chocolate grits. Yuck.

Charlemange said...

I had this tonight. I used cayenne powder. It was great with fresh raspberries.

Anonymous said...

I certainly will attempt this lovely creation at my house this weekend. I will, however, need to at least double the servings. Does this recipe double or triple in direct proportions, or are there ratios involved?

And I do Thank You, sir, for giving these wonderful recipes away to us AND for the time, effort, prep, and cleanup you put into the videos.

Chef John said...

yes, u can double no prob. thanks!

Anonymous said...

Thanks!

Gosh, that was easy. ONce many many years ago I made a chocolate mousse. Somewhere in my brain I remembered it as being a production.

Guess the good news is that my culinary skills must have improved over the years, 'cuz this was a breeze and very very good.

I'll definitely do this again.

Clara said...

While I was at work today I abruptly decided to make this dessert for a dinner party I had tonight - got home at about 5.20pm, whipped it up in about 10-15mins, chucked it in the freezer for an hour while the guests arrived, made the no-knead pizza for the main event (a real crowd pleaser as usual) and then put the mousse back in the fridge until we were ready to eat it. As far as I can tell, it was at a perfectly mousse-like texture, i.e. fully set, so... Basically if you don't get a chance to chill it overnight, you can still serve it using this freezer method. Thanks again for the great recipe!

Carlos said...

Was wondering if you can use the creme fraiche from the recipe (with a bit of sugar added to it) instead of the whipped heavy cream? It seems like this could be a good use for it too. Not sure though.

Chef John said...

may be too rich and/or sour. Doesn't sound great to me.

Carlos said...

Thanks, Chef. I appreciate you takin the time.

Zublime75 said...

Hi Chef!! I love chocolate mousse!!! I want to try this one but I already have Nestle's milk chocolate morsels can I use them instead of the dark chocolate?

Thank you for your recipes they are awesome!!

Chef John said...

thanks! This recipe is designed for dark chocolate which has a different make-up than milk. I've never tried it, so it may work, but not sure.

Rage In Apathy said...

I'm gonna make this for a double date (my sister, her fiance, me and my fiance), and I just know it's gonna be great! :)
Thanks for the great and simple recipes :)

PS. Your sense of humor - we love it :)

Setareh said...

I'm a student studying to be a chef and watching your videos on my laptop in the kitchen has been one of the funnest things I've ever done.

You're so AWESOME and funny.

Anonymous said...

Hi Chef John,

Q. why do you cook your egg yolks first before mixing them into the chocolate sauce?

I used another recipe and it called for adding the (room temp.) eggs directly to the chocolate mixture. Unfortunately it always becomes grainy.

Do you

Chef John said...

yolks cooked to thicken and also taste differently. you just cant overcook, or they get grainy

Anonymous said...

Hey Chef John, the recipe says 1 tablespoons of sugar but it looks like you put in more? When you say 1 tablespoons plural it sounds like you meant maybe be 2 tablespoons? it looks like you put in more than 1 tablespoon. I can't mess this up for Valentines day!

Chef John said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chef John said...

No it is one, that bowl is tiny and it looks like more. You can add a little more if you like it sweeter, it will not hurt the recipe. Do a test batch!

Sherry said...

OH. MY. GOD.
I tried this out a few hours ago, and just took a few bites.
It tastes amazing!
The only problem is im not entirely sure how many hours i'd have to wait.

robyn said...

Dear chef John,

Could you be so kind as to show us how to make a chocolate mousse cake?
I tried making it using your chocolate mousse recipe ( i doubled the measurements). However when i tried to cut it, the whole cake collapsed and melted.

Chef John said...

unfortunately for the next couple months the only recipes I can do is the ones for the cookbook! Sorry!

Melanie said...

I doubled this recipe, except for the chipotle, to fit into a 9" pie dish. Very good stuff and the heat after a couple of bites was quite a conversation starter.
Thank you for the great video. I played it a couple of times while preparing it.

Anonymous said...

hi.Can i use chili powder to substitute the chipotle? what do you mean by 1/2 cup plus 1 tblespoon of heavy whipping cream? is it 1/2 cup and add another 1 tbspoon of heavy whipping cream? Is there a different between heavy whipping cream and heavy cream?

Sorry if I troubled you.thank you.--fadhilah.

Chef John said...

no not the same. chipotle is spicy like cayenne. The extra cream is to whip for the topping

Anonymous said...

oh..So.I'll just have to skip the chipotle. thank you.--fadhilah

Carina said...

Chef John, I tried this recipe and it was excellent! If I want to make a "Rum" version of it, how much should I use? Much thanks!

Chef John said...

not sure about rum. if you put much it won't set. if you put too little won't taste like it. you'd have to experiment.

Carina said...

I just tried it... 3 teaspoon of rum is perfect :) Thanks Chef John!

Anonymous said...

How many servings does this exact recipe make? If I double it, is there enough for 8 people? Thanks

Chef John said...

yes, double will make 8

Anonymous said...

Hi Chef John, approximately what size are the ramekins? Is it alright to use a mixer to whip the cream? Also, is it possible to use light whipping cream to replace the heavy cream? If so, any idea how much of whipping cream I should use? Thank you!

Chef John said...

there about 5 oz, yes, and not sure about the light cream.

Anonymous said...

Hi chef John,
I tried the mousse, tasted excellent used chilli as well, it wasnt airy. Woner why you haven used egg whites. how to make it airy and not stiff has baffled me. Any suggestions?

catherine said...

hi chef john,
i made dis previously n failed...too much water i think but de tste is good though...tonight im making it again for tomorrow pot luck wif my best fren..but i found tat only can get 3 ramekins...n i can't fold nicely like wat u did...its a bit dry dis time...but hopefully it'll turn out great tomorrow...anyway 10s for ur recipe..

Anonymous said...

If I only have medium sized eggs, should I go for three or four egg yolks?

shimp said...

Hey Chef John,

I was wondering, wouldn't the chocolate end up seizing because of the water? I tried this one recipe before where I melted the chocolate with water and it ended up completely seizing on me :( Or does the butter stop the seizing?

Other than that, the mousse looks delicious! :)

Chef John said...

not sure to be honest, but I know it works! (as you can see ;-)

shimp said...

It does! :D

I tried making this yesterday; everyone loves it! Thanks for the recipe :)

NYCHOMECHEF said...

Chef,would you please explain the difference between your recipe and ones that call for whipped egg whites in terms of taste and texture.Yours looks richer and I like the fact that you cooked the yolks this way even pregnant women can enjoy this wonderful dessert.Thank you!

Chef John said...

egg whites are used when you want a much lighter texture. Thanks!

esther. :) said...

Can you please give me a recipe for 6? thanks. :D

Kabu said...

What a wonderful recipe. i've just finished making it for christmas eve dinner... and i got the silky-smooth look on the chocolate it's soooooooo amazing....

and thanks a lot for the folding technique.... althoug i was repeating CUT, FOLD AND TURN.... everytime hahaha

Thnks a lot Chef John

wildscarlet said...

not sure why, but i added a bit more butter to the chocolate, about a tablespoon more (so 2 tablespoons total) because it did not look like yours. After it all melted, it was too runny, it wasn't velvety.

Julie said...

Looks so goooood....I'm gonna try this one tonight! You are funny and amazing Chef! So glad that I found your blog!

Ica said...

I just finished making this with my sister. The mousse is sitting in the fridge for tomorrow. My sister, who is 18 and very conscious about what she eats, has just licked both the spatula and the bowl clean. She loves it and now loves me a bit more too! Haha. Thanks, Chef. Your recipes inspire me to cook.

Anonymous said...

Hey Chef John, i've been making alot of your delicious chocolate valentines day desserts and other recipes. And i've wondered since im in europe, how much is "1 cup" i got it to match with 200ML. Love your videos and your voice :)
- Alexander 17
From Denmark

Chef John said...

It's actually 240ml not 200! 30ml = 1oz x 8 oz. btw, there are many metric converters online.

Patricia said...

Hi, Chef! I just made this today. Sadly, the chocolate was too runny so I had add more whipped cream, I wonder what I did wrong? Thanks! :)

Chef John said...

Sorry, no way to know!

Anonymous said...

Hi Chef John,

This was the first recipe I tried from your blog. It came out lovely and very rich and tasty and its already all finished :-(

Thanks for the recipe and the excellent instructional video.

P.S - I used the chilli because i'm not a wuss :-)

Next time I may add a dash of cinnamon and maybe some grated orange peel just before folding, just to mix it up!

Anonymous said...

im making it right now for valentines day! so far so good! and as for the white bits someone said they saw in the chocolate mixture at 28 sec it looks like the salt "he forgot" or a little bit of sugar he maybe went to add to the chocolate and caught himself. :) im very excited!!!! thank you!

Anonymous said...

Whisking that whipping cream was insanely hard...and I used milk chocolate instead. I don't think it's going to come out very good. At the end my mixture was not very thick, it was still pretty runny. But here's hoping. Any tips on and easier way to whip the cream? And does milk chocolate create a different consistency than dark?

Jenny said...

I've made this so many times! Just thought I'd take a photo of how I like to eat this masterpiece of a recipe!!! :)

http://bloominglove.deviantart.com/art/Dark-Chocolate-Mousse-289711206

Bebeuh said...

I like the presentation (Sorry I use a translator to write)

Edwin said...

Hi Chef John,

I am really interested in making this chocolate mousse, however is it possible to make this as a cake with a biscuit base?

Thanks :)

Chef John said...

Never done, but sure!

4 boys in AZ. said...

When you say dark chocolate bar do you mean bittersweet or unsweetened? If bittersweet, what percentage of cacao works best, for example 60% or 70% cacao, or some other percent? Also, is there a brand of chocolate bar that you like best?

Chef John said...

yes, a 60% or 70% cacao is perfect.

Nora-Cassandra said...

Dear Chef,

I am such a big FAN!!! Even though I love my Chef and think he is great but i still keep following your blog, and following you on Youtube.

I work in the customer side of the biggest (maybe the best) Patisserie in Bahrain.

I'm making this recipe for my daughter's birthday party. If I remember right it was good for 4 servings only. I need to make it for 20pax. So I would like to ask you if I should make it in small portions one by one as your recipe or simply multiply the ingredients by 5 and make it once?

The birthday party is on 5th Oct hope to get an answer soon!

<3

Chef John said...

You can just multiply! :) enjoy!

Katee said...

My eggs keep cooking instead of getting frothy :( I have the burner on low and the water isn't that hot either.

Lau Siaw Sam said...

Hi chef,
Could i add two whole eggs wih the whites instead of just the yolks to make it fluffier or lighter? And its also partially because i suck at separating eggs. Thanks!

Lau Siaw Sam said...

Hi chef,

Do you think i could add two whole eggs with the whites instead of just the yolks to make it lighter or fluffier? And it is partially because i suck at separating eggs. Thanks!!

Chef John said...

Sorry, never tried!

Rose said...

hello my question is what is the short amount of time for it to chill before eating??

Rose said...

hello what do you think is the short time it can be chilled before eating??

Chef John said...

Needs a couple hours

Yvonne said...

Hi Chef John, is it possible to use white chocolate instead of dark chocolate? or should I use a dark chooclate with a lower cocoa percentage?

rockerchicksurferboy said...

Hey Chef John. Thanks so much for the recipe! Chipotle chilli was incredible. It even converted my partner, who doesn't like mousse.
Quick question. When melting my chocolate in the double broiler, the first time it turned into a chunky dry mess. Not the creamy version you have on the video. My guess is I over mixed it. What do you think? Suggestions?
Cheers,
Dave

Chef John said...

Either you used a chocolate that doesn't melt, or you got some water in the chocolate! Or maybe too hot. Impossible for me to know for sure.

Auria said...

How many servings does this recipe make please? I am going to make this tomorrow for a few people and wonder if I should double it or triple it?
Thank you - it looks amazing. And easy!

Jasmine Terwilliger said...

Just thought I would let the viewers know - I tried this recipe but used white chocolate instead of dark. Turned out amazing. The only changes I made were to omit the butter (the white chocolate was buttery enough) and I used less water because I made it the filling for chocolate cake. Outstanding.