Triple Chocolate Mousse Cake

It may technically still be summer, and some days are still warm(ish), but Labor Day has passed so it’s unofficially fall.  I hope you all enjoyed your Labor Day weekend.  I spent several days trekking around Puerto Rico, sometimes laying on the beach and other times spelunking in dark caves, kayaking in the Bio Bay, and so forth.  I returned home with some minor bumps and bruises, a twisted ankle, and a nice tan.  All in all, I say that’s a successful trip!

It took me some time to start to get back into the swing of things in the kitchen.  I mean really, do you know how many times you need to do laundry to wash cave-stink out of your clothes?

 The recipe below is delicious but somewhat tedious to make simply because it involves three separate phases.  You make each layer, let it set, and then make the layer above – therefore you have to wash the bowls (or use a heck of a lot of dishes) between each layer.  If you’re willing to put up with this, the end result is well worth it, but be prepared.

 Triple Chocolate Mousse Cake
Adapted from: Sugar Duchess

for the cake:
10 oz (about 1 2/3 c) semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
4 large eggs, separated and at room temperature
1/3 c sugar, divided
¼ t salt
1 t vanilla extract
1 stick (½ c) butter, room temperature, cut into chunks

middle layer:
10 oz semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 ½ c heavy cream, divided
1 t unflavored gelatin, softened in 1 T cool water

top layer:
7 oz (a little over 1 c chopped) white chocolate, chopped
1 ½ c heavy cream, divided
1 t unflavored gelatin, softened in 1 T cool water

for the cake:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease the bottom of a 9- or 10-inch springform pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.
  • Chop the chocolate into small chunks and melt it in the microwave or a double boiler until about 75% melted.  Remove from heat and stir slowly until completely melted.
  • While chocolate finishes melting, with an electric mixer combine egg whites and about 1/3 of the sugar on low speed, gradually increasing speed until egg whites look fluffy.  Add remaining sugar, salt, and vanilla, beating until shiny and at soft-peak stage.
  • Using a whisk, combine butter into the warm chocolate until completely incorporated.  Whisk in egg yolks.
  • Whisk half of the meringue into the chocolate mixture.  Then, with a spatula, gently fold in remaining meringue, combining so no streaks remain.
  • Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 26-28 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  • Cool cake on a wire rack and bring it to room temperature.  As it cools it will sink, and this is fine.  Refrigerate for an hour and then remove from the springform pan.  Level with a knife if necessary.  Invert onto a serving plate and replace the ring from the springform around the cake – it will serve as the mold for the next two layers.

for the middle layer:

  • Place chopped chocolate in a medium heat-proof bowl.
  • Bring ½ cup of heavy cream to a boil and pour it over the chopped chocolate, stirring until smooth.  If the chocolate doesn’t melt completely, heat on low in the microwave for 30 seconds.
  • While chocolate is melting, soften gelatin in a dish with cool water.  Once soft, heat on low in microwave to dissolve.  When free of lumps, stir gelatin into the melted chocolate.
  • With an electric mixer, whip the remaining cup of heavy cream to soft peaks.
  • Check the temperature of the chocolate- it should be about 80 degrees.  This will prevent the chocolate from hardening but is cool enough not to melt the whipped cream.  Add about half of the whipped cream into the chocolate, whisking to combine.  Then, as done with the cake layer, gently fold in the remaining whipped cream with a spatula until combined.
  • Pour over cooled cake, smooth top with spatula, and refrigerate to set.

for the top layer:

  • Repeat steps for the middle layer, using white chocolate.
  • Pour white mousse over chocolate mousse and return to refrigerate to set for 4-5 hours.
  • To serve, remove ring.  Optionally, garnish with chocolate shavings (I did this but forgot it in the photos).  Slice with a warm, wet knife, cleaning it between slices.
  • This is a very rich cake – small slices are all that you need!

Serves: 20
Calories: if you care, don’t make it

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