Dark chocolate and meringue is one of the best flavors and textures combination in desserts. The bitterness of the dark chocolate (the more cocoa solids – the better) combines perfectly with the crunchiness and sweetness of the meringue.
This chocolate mousse cake may look plain, but it hides a meringue disc in its center and the decoration is made of meringue cookies. It’s festive, super chocolatey and simply delicious. It’s a great cake for special occasions and holidays, and would also be great for upcoming Passover.
Chocolate Mousse Cake with Meringue
For the crust:
- 200 grams plain biscuits or graham crackers (see notes for Passover version)
- 50 grams (3 tbsp.) melted butter
- 25 grams (1 heaping tablespoon) Nutella
For meringue insert and decoration:
- 3 egg whites at room temperature
- 100 grams (1/2 cup) sugar
- 100 grams (3/4 cup) sugar powder
For dark chocolate mousse:
- 2 grams (1/2 tsp.) gelatin powder
- 10 ml. (2 tsp.) water
- 200 ml. (3/4 cup) milk
- 50 ml. (1/4 cup) heavy cream
- 2 large egg yolks
- 20 gram (2 tbsp.) sugar
- 350 grams dark chocolate 53% cocoa solids
- 200 grams dark chocolate 70% cocoa solids
- 480 grams (2 cups) heavy cream
For chocolate ganache (optional):
- 200 grams dark chocolate chopped
- 200 ml. (3/4 cup) heavy cream
- 20 grams (1 tbsp.) glucose or golden syrup
- 10 grams (1 tbps.) soft butter
Crust: grind the biscuit in a food processor to a fine powder.
Add melted butter and Nutella and mix until blended. Transfer onto the bottom of the pan and tight in an even thin layer. Freeze for about 1/2 hour.
Meringue: whisk the egg whites at high speed.
When mixture gets a whitish foam texture, add the sugar and continue to whip for 10 minutes.
Sift in the sugar powder and fold until incorporated.
Spoon into pastry bag fitted with 8mm piping tip and drizzle 22 cm circle over an oven pan lined with baking paper. Drizzle the remaining meringue into "kisses" for decoration.
Bake the meringues (base and kisses) at 100 degrees for 2-3 hours, or until completely dry.
Chocolate mousse: in a small bowl mix gelatin and water and set aside for about 10 minutes at room temperature.
In a medium bowl melt the chocolate in the microwave or over double-boiler.
In a saucepan heat cream, milk and sugar to simmering point.
In a separate bowl whisk the egg yolks slightly. When milk mixture is boiling, add it in a thin stream into the yolks while whisking.
Return the mixture into the pot over low heat and continue to cook on low-medium heat while stirring with a spatula, until it reaching a temperature of 82c degrees.
Remove the mixture from heat. Melt the gelatin and add into the mixture while stirring. Strain the mixture over the melted chocolate and mix until blended.
Whip the cream into a soft but stable whipped cream.
Fold the whipped cream into chocolate mixture until the mixture is quite sparse.
Remove the pan from the freezer, and pour in a little more than half amount of mousse.
Place over the meringue base and pour the rest of the mousse over.
Level the top with a spatula and freeze for about 4-5 hours (preferably overnight).
Chocolate ganache: heat cream and golden syrup to a simmer.
Pour the cream over dark chocolate and wait a minute. whisk the mixture until smooth and shiny.
Add the soft butter and stir until the butter melts.
Pour the ganache over the cake and chill until set.
Remove the cake from the pan and garnish with meringue kisses.
Refrigerate for 2-3 hours to defrost and serve.
- You can skip the chocolate ganache coating and simply sprinkle some cocoa powder on top.
- Keep the chocolate mousse cake in a sealed container for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.
- In Passover, use Passover vanilla cookies (Wine Cookies) in the same amount of the biscuits.