One benefit of being at my parents' house (besides the obvious joy of seeing family!) is the chance to rediscover my mom's cookbook collection. It is fantastic, not because of its size, necessarily, but because of its deliberately-selected contents. My mom has great taste in food, and her collection shows it. Especially the small sampling of books that reside on the countertop. They've proven themselves to be a step above the books relegated to the overflow library behind a cupboard--so good, they're always an arm's-reach away.
One such book is Chocolate Desserts by Pierre Hermé. It's written by Dorie Greenspan, who is a great writer and chef in her own right, and I think it's the best cookbook I've ever read. I can look at the photos and read the instructions, and I honestly feel just as satiated and happy as if I had actually bitten into a beautiful French dessert. But if reading isn't enough for you (and let's be honest, it's usually not enough), here's one recipe that is easy, delicious and great for the holidays: simple chocolate mousse.
6 oz. bittersweet chocolate
1/3 cup whole milk
1 large egg yolk
4 large egg whites
2 T. sugar
Melt chocolate in bowl large enough to hold all ingredients. Set aside. Bring milk to a boil and pour over the chocolate. Gently whisk to combine. Add egg yolk and whisk into chocolate, working gently, until incorporated. In clean bowl, beat egg whites on medium until they hold soft peaks. Increase speed and gradually add sugar. Continue to beat until whites are firm but still glossy. Scoop out one-third of the whites and whisk into the chocolate to lighten the mixture. Then add the rest of the whites and fold gently with a rubber spatula into the chocolate. Turn mousse into a large serving bowl or into individual cups and refigerate at least 1 hour to set.
So that wraps up my week as a guest-blogger. Thank you, Angie and Kristin, for inviting me to do this. And thank you, gracious readers, for doing your thing.