Essential Pépin: Chocolate mousse

This is the third and final post in my Essential Pépin series.  To celebrate the release of Jacques Pépin’s new cookbook, Essential Pépin, Thomas Allen challenged Canadian home chefs and bloggers to cook up their own French meals with recipes from the book with the chance to win a KitchenAid® Artisan Series Stand Mixer, courtesy of KitchenAid® Canada!

In his more than sixty years as a chef, Jacques Pépin has earned a reputation as a champion of simplicity. His recipes are classics. They find the shortest, surest route to flavour, avoiding complicated techniques. Now, in a book that celebrates his life in food, the world’s most famous cooking teacher winnows his favourite recipes from the thousands he has created, streamlining them even further.  Essential Pépin spans the many styles of Jacques’s cooking: homey country French, haute cuisine, fast food Jacques-style, and fresh contemporary American dishes. Many of the recipes are globally inspired, from Mexico, across Europe, or the Far East. This truly is the essential Pépin.

I was already impressed with the composed salad with goat cheese, greens and caramelized pecans and the chicken in tarragon sauce.  In fact, we served these three dishes as a complete meal to guests a few weeks ago and they were super impressed – as was I at not only the taste but ease of preparation of all three dishes.  The mousse was no exception in the “simple” department – I whipped this up in a little under 30 minutes late one Thursday night. The hardest part is waiting for the chocolate to cool down so you can mix it into the egg yolk emulsion without it breaking. Ahem. Some of us had to melt a second batch of chocolate and wait even longer because they were so impatient.

Unlike Julia Child’s mousse this one does include cream so it’s a little lighter than Julia’s but still substantial enough that you can only have a tiny amount.  We enjoyed it with a little grated orange zest and it was fabulous just like that. No whipped cream, nothing needed. Jacques, you did it again!

I am really looking forward to receiving my copy of Essential Pépin and hopefully sharing some more delicious recipe with you.

In the meantime, you can read more about the contest (and find the salad, chicken and mousse recipes) on Facebook.

26 thoughts on “Essential Pépin: Chocolate mousse”

  1. this looks so yummy! Ive bookmarked it ready to get the ingredients next time I brave the supermarket, thanks! Belle

  2. Love the orange zest sprinkled on top of this mousse! Enjoyed this series of posts Mardi and though I’ve never attempted a mousse, this one of yours (Pepin’s) makes me think I just might be able to pull it off 🙂
    Have a wonderful weekend!

  3. That is just gorgeous–love the orange zest on top! I swear by a Barefoot Contessa mousse recipe myself, but might have to taste-test this one to, you know, make a scientific comparison.

  4. Your mousse looks absolutely stunning Mardi. I made it too, as I loved the combinations. I used orange chocolate and cointreau and it was gorgeous. And you’re so right, its unbelievably rich. I cut the recipe in half and it still went around to serve three. I can’t wait to recieve my copy of Essential Pepin… already drooling at the throught of some of those recipes.

    Its an orange day for me today… just made chocolate orange shortbread cookies 🙂

  5. A good chocolate mousse IS an essential in every home.

    This was the best one Mardi’s produced yet – and finally, I must say it tops my old standby (from the Silver Palate Cookbook of many moons ago). 🙂

    This pairs nicely with a wee snifter of Mandarin Napolean to end a meal.

  6. I’ve always loved orange with chocolate what a great idea to use the zest to brighten up the mousse. The composed salad sounds great I will be sure to look that one up too.


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