Monday, 20 February 2012

Chocolate Mousse - A Rescue Mission

What can you do with a bowful of ganache, intended for truffles, which is rock hard at room temperature, crumbly, and showing signs of seizing? Some might throw it into the bin, but I'm a thrifty, frugal cook, and it goes against my nature to throw away 350g of chocolate and double cream (even if FB paid for it, and it was her attempt at truffles which went wrong!)

At first, I thought I could rescue the mixture, and still make truffles, but when I tried to re-melt the chocolate and add more ingredients to make it a softer set, it split terribly, and I ended up with a lump of warm soft chocolate-like goo in a huge puddle of oil. I had added 2 tablespoons of Amaretto Liqueur and 50g of white chocolate in an effort to improve the truffle mix, but once it split so badly, it seemed doomed.

By now, I was thinking of possibly a chocolate sauce, if the mixture could be persuaded to recombine. As a last resort, I tried something which has worked for me before, when making cake frostings, but which is never mentioned as an orthodox remedy for split ganache. I beat the mixture with an electric whisk, while dribbling in cold semi-skimmed milk. After several dribbles of milk (about 4 or 5 tablespoons) I had a lovely bowl of soft ganache, without a hint of splitting.

It seemed a shame to dilute it further to make a sauce, but I wasn't sure it would ever set hard enough for trufles after so much milk had been added, so instead I quickly beat in two egg yolks, and then folded in the stiffly beaten egg whites, to make a mousse. It was still a bit of a gamble as to how well it would set, but I'm pleased to say it made a very light, soft mousse. Because the original chocolate was 85% cocoa solids, and the only added sugar was in the white chocolate and amaretto, it still tasted rich and delicious, although not as deeply chocolatey as a traditional mousse using just eggs and chocolate.

7 comments:

Chele said...

Oh my word - excuse me while I like the screen!

The KitchenMaid said...

That's very clever of you - I have a small jug of chocolate ganache in the fridge which I am eating with a teaspoon in moments of stress (suffice to say, it will probably be all gone by breakfast time).

Foodycat said...

Very impressive rescue! I had no idea you could bring a ganache back like that.

Suelle said...

It usually works for me, Foodycat, but I'm giving no guarantees that it will work every time.

Baking Addict said...

great save, I will bear that in mind next time my ganache goes wrong!

C said...

What a great save! I hate it when recipes go so wrong and you end up wasting valuable ingredients, so frustrating. Looks as though you ended up with an excellent dessert here!

Phil in the Kitchen said...

This is definitely worth remembering. You might help me through my next disaster.