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The Book Club Cookbook - by Judy Gelman, Vicki Levy Krupp

YieId: 8 to 10 servings

Julia Glass has a passion for souffles and mousses—and apparently for white chocolate. For a recent New Year's Eve feast, Julia Glass made the white chocolate and pear mousse from 'The Open House Cookbook' by Sara Leah Chase (Workman, 1987). "It's the best dessert I've ever made," says Glass. We adapted Chase's recipe to create a pure white chocolate mousse.

6 eggs, separated
1 cup sifted confectioners' sugar
1/3 cup pear brandy
10 ounces best-quality white chocolate, chopped or broken into small pieces
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 cups heavy cream
Mint sprigs and fresh berries for garnish

1) Combine the egg yolks, sugar, and pear brandy in a small mixing bowl. Beat with an electric mixer on high speed until the eggs become light yellow, about 5 minutes (the mixture should fall in ribbons when beaters are lifted). Transfer to the top of a double boiler over simmering water or place the mixing bowl in a saucepan of simmering water. Heat, whisking constantly, until quite thick, 4 - 5 minutes. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and set aside.

2) Melt the chocolate and butter in a saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly until smooth. Remove from heat and add the chocolate to the egg mixture, stirring until smooth. Let cool to room temperature.

3) Meanwhile, in a chilled bowl beat the cream until quite stiff. Wash and dry beaters. Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form but mixture is not dry. Fold the egg whites into the chocolate mixture, then gently fold in the whipped cream.

4) Spoon the mousse into 8 large wine goblets or other dessert glasses. Place in refrigerator and chill until set, at least 2 - 3 hours. Garnish with mint sprigs and fresh berries before serving.


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