My friend is hosting her daughter's bridal shower at my house on Saturday. I am so excited that she asked me to make the desserts, and requested my favorite... mini lemon cheesecakes, and something chocolate. I have made the cheesecakes on many occasions, and they always seem to go over pretty well. As an added bonus, a couple of bites and they're gone, easy, delicious, and not too many calories. Since I needed to come up with something chocolate for the chocolate lovers, I thought a rich chocolate mousse would be appropriate. I wanted them to be in similar size as the cheesecake, so I thought I would experiment with my pans, adapted a couple of recipes, and this is what I came up with. They were delicious! The bride liked them, so I will be making these along with mini lemon cheesecakes on Friday.
Mini Chocolate Mousse Cakes
2 cups chocolate wafer cookies crumbs
4 Tbs. sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
4 Tbs. unsalted butter, melted
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly coat 24 cup mini cheesecake pans (two pans) with non-stick spray. Stir cookie crumbs, sugar, and salt. Add melted butter and blend until moist sandy texture forms. Press mixture evenly onto bottom of pan. Bake 10 minutes. Cool completely on wire racks.
1 1/2 pounds semisweet chocolate (chips may be used)
1/2 cup prepared espresso coffee
1/2 cup Grand Marnier
4 egg yolks
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup granulated sugar
8 egg whites
pinch of salt
Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of about 1 1/2 inches of nearly simmering water, whisking until smooth. Add espresso coffee, then stir in Grand Marnier. Cool to room temperature. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating thoroughly after each addition. Whip cream until thickened, then gradually beat in sugar, beating until stiff. Beat egg whites with salt until stiff. Gently fold egg whites into cream. Stir about one third of cream and egg mixture thoroughly into chocolate mixture. Add remaining cream and egg mixture over the lightened chocolate base and fold together very gently. Divide the mousse evenly into prepared cups. refrigerate until set.