My grandmother always served chocolate coffee mousse for dessert and I loved it. But as a kid, I didn’t really like coffee on its own. The first time I ever drank coffee I kept adding sugar to make it taste better… it just made it worse and it took me years to recover. Today, now that I have learnt to love coffee (especially strong and black), I still can’t imagine drinking coffee with sugar.
Oh well, coffee in cakes, ice cream or chocolate mousse is a always a treat (and in my upcoming book which I co-authored together with Anna Brones, Fika – The Art of the Swedish Coffee Break we share a delicious Hazelnut Coffee Cake recipe). When I started to make chocolate mousse this winter I ended up not flavoring it at all. I just liked it as it was. Thick, chocolaty and totally comforty! The recipe I’m using, is an old classic formula which you can find in Elizabeth David’s book French Provincial Cooking. The recipe is simply described with a few words:
“4 yolks beaten into 4 oz. of melted bitter chocolate, and the 4 whipped whites folded in.”
Her recipe serves 4, which makes this a super clever recipe. You just need to count one egg and one ounce chocolate (about 30 grams) per person.
The illustrated recipe diagram above suggests adding one teaspoon of sugar per serving, which I learnt from Felicity Cloake’s How to make perfect chocolate mousse article in the Guardian.
And I’m sure a little bit of cold coffee, some drops of rum or juice of an orange will work fine to spice it up. As I said, I like it just plain or topped with star anise infused black berries.
check also out these chocolate mousse links
Chocolate Mousse (coffee & dark rum) by David Lebovitz (adapted from Julia Childs recipe)
Spizy Boozy Mousse (coffee, cinnamon & ancho chili) by Sara Kate Gillingham @ theKitchn
Swedish Chef making Chocolate Moose – Muppet Show (video)
If you are afraid to get Salmonella by using raw eggs, you can pasteurize them. (I get fresh organic eggs that are free from hormones and antibiotics).
At the beginning of the summer I spotted a cake on twitter that I just couldn’t resist. It was a Chocolate & Hazelnut Cake by Ana Vega. The cake is not a dessert cake, its more like a breakfast cake or something perfect for an afternoon cup of tea. From Ana I later learned that the cake was a remake of her Plum cake corriente y moliente (plum cake with dried fruits). Sounds amazing, doesn’t it? Ana runs the cake & dessert blog Biscayenne (all in Spanish) where she share recipes and stories from her tiny kitchen in Bilbao. She also has an online vintage shop with pretty cutlery, porcelain and other kitchenware.
I have now baked this cake several times and just a few weeks ago I added some black cherries to the cake. It made it very moist and delicious. The cherries worked really well with the dark chocolate. I can also imagine adding some banana but in the end its absolutely fine just as it is.
I have only made a few changes to the recipe: Instead of regular sugar I used brown sugar. I also reduced the sugar as I wanted a less sweet cake, which Ana also suggest when using fruit in the cake.
Ana’s Hazelnut Cake with Chocolate
180g (7/8 Cup) brown sugar
250g (1 2/3 cup) flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
125g (a little more than 4 oz) butter
150g (1 cup) hazelnuts
60g (70%) (about 2 oz) dark chocolate
Melt the butter in a saucepan. Mill the hazelnuts finely in a food processor or nut grinder. (If you don’t have either just chop it finely). Chop the chocolate into small pieces. Beat eggs and sugar together before adding flour and baking powder. Blend well together to avoid any floury lumps in the batter. Pour in the melted butter and stir together before adding the milled hazelnuts and the chocolate.
Grease a loaf tin or similar mold and pour the batter into it. Bake the cake for 15 minutes 355°F (180°C). Lower the heat to 320°F (160°C) and continue baking until the top has a brown crisp crust and a toothpick comes out dry (about 40-45 minutes).
Enjoy at breakfast, brunch or with an afternoon tea!
This article was originally published at Honest Cooking on 12 September 2012
My favorite sweet is licorice; sweet, salty or both. Unfortunately its hard to find my favorites outside Scandinavia. This has made me dream of making my own licorice treats.
This winter I finally got my hands on some licorice powder. I was so totally happy that I wanted to tell the whole world about my treasure. One person I told was a sale’s women in my favorite candy shop in Malmö (Sweden). She was impressed (or rather amused) and offered me a taste of some of their exclusive chocolate bars. One of them was a dark chocolate with a touch of licorice. I was sold…
for the Chocolate Cake
1 cup (250 ml) sucanat
4-6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 pinch of salt (only if you’re using unsalted butter)
2/3 cup (150 ml) pastry flour
4 oz (a little more than 100g) butter, melted
Whisk eggs and sucanat in a bowl. In a separate bowl sift flour together with cocoa powder and salt. Add the flour mixture to the eggs and stir until combined. Pour in the butter and stir until smooth.
Pour the mixture into a greased 9” pie form. Bake the cake in the oven at 350 F (150°C) for about 15-20 minutes. The cake should be sticky inside. Let the cake cool off.
Ganache with Licorice
2/3 cup (150 ml) cream
½ cup (100 ml) sucanat (use no sugar if chocolate is sweetened)
3.5 oz dark chopped chocolate (I used Lindt Excellence 85% Cocoa)
1 teaspoon licorice powder*
two table spoons butter
Bring the cream and the sucanat to a boil. Lower the heat and add the chocolate and the licorice powder. When chocolate is melted take the pan aside and add the butter. Stir until smooth.
Spread the ganache over the cooled chocolate cake and let it cool for at least an hour.
At last I have to say that I got very inspired by the lovely recipes in the new Swedish cook book, Lakrits, Mint & Choklad (Licorice, Mint & Chocolate) by Elisabeth Johansson.
*licorice powder is a licorice flavoring in powder form. Unfortunate I haven’t found this product in the USA. However it may be possible to buy it online from Panduro Hobby (folow this link if you are in the UK)
You can also find licorice flavoring at Essence Fabriken in Stockholm. They take orders by phone or fax. Hopefully they take orders from other countries than Sweden.
I while ago I had a Pistachio cake from a neighborhood bakery. It was very buttery and creamy. The butter cream was flavored with matcha (Japanese green tea). I thought the pistachio and the green tea was a great combination so I decided to do my own version that ended up totally different…
butter cream with matcha
100 ml (½ cup) sucanat
20 ml (0.125 cup) water
100 g (a little less than 1 stick) butter
about 1 tablespoon matcha (green tea powder)
Heat up the water with the sucanat. Let it cook, stirring constantly, until you can form soft balls. In the mean time beat the eggs in an electric mixer. When the sucanat mixture is done, add it very slowly to the eggs to avoid scrambled eggs in the butter cream. When the mixture is cooler carefully add the softened butter. Use low speed and add the butter carefully. It’s very easy to make the mixture coagulate. If that happens take new butter and add the coagulated mixture carefully into the new mixed butter. At last you add the matcha carefully. Take more matcha for a stronger tea taste.
50 ml (0.60 cup) almonds
50 ml (0.75 cup) pistachios
20 ml (½ cup) flour
300 ml (1.2 cup) sucanat
50 g (0.11 lbs) butter
Mill the almonds and pistachios and blend with the flour and the sucanat. Beat the eggs and add the nut mixture. At last add the melted butter. Spread the nut mixture into two round cakes, about 20 cm (8 inches) diameter and 2 mm (1/8”) thick, on buttered baking paper. Bake in the oven 200°C (392 F) for 8-10 minutes until they are darker or more golden brown if you use regular white sugar.
(I had only salty pistachio at home. It worked out fine as a nice contrast to the sweeter almonds.)
80 g (0.18 lbs) bittersweet dark chocolate
100 ml (0.4 cup) cream
Melt the chocolate with the cream. I added some sucanat to make it a little sweeter.
Spread the butter cream over one pistachio cake. Place the other cake layer above the butter cream. Lastly spread the chocolate on top of everything. Let it cool before serving.
I took the cake with me on a barbeque and everybody thought it was really delicious. The cake looked a little bit funny as I had some problems – it was a hot summer day. I had to put the cake in the freezer so it didn’t melt totally. Even if I was satisfied I will try to improve the recipe next time. I will do that when the autumn comes.
300 ml (1 ¼ cup) white flour
75 g (2.6 ounces) butter
3 -5 tablespoons sucanat
3 tablespoons cold water
150-200 ml (0.6-0.8 cups) regular sugar (recommended even if I use sucanat)
75 g (2.6 ounces) butter
fine peel of 1-2 lime
juice from 1-2 limes
decorate with peels from a lime and strawberries
In my dough I always take more sugar (sucanat) than the recipe says, as I want the dough to be sweeter than the filling. Mix the dough. Let it rest in the fridge for 1/2 hour. Pre bake the dough in the oven for 10 min, temp 200°C (392F).
Mix the filling in a blender. Add the lime and sucanat to your own taste. Pour it over the pre baked pie shell and bake it in the oven for 15-20 min until the filling is firm. Decorate with peels from a lime and fresh strawberries.
I like mine topped with whipped cream together with a glass of Prosecco.
See similar recipe, Ginger & Lime Tart