Salt of the Earth Bakery's Executive Chef, Alexandra Joseph Rabbani, fell in love with her husband back when they were both in high school. It took him a little longer to jump on the bandwagon, but this chocolate mousse with a salty twist that she whipped up for him most definitely helped. You can't go wrong with a homemade treat that's Made With Love.
For the tart crust:
- 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, plus extra for the work surface
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 3 tablespoon all-natural vegetable shortening, chilled and cut into small pieces
- 5 tablespoon unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
- 4-6 tablespoon ice water
For the mousse:
- 1 1/4 cup good quality bittersweet chocolate, preferably 72%
- 3 tablespoon butter
- 3 Eggs, separated
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp sugar, separated
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Fleur de Sel
For the tart crust- Step 1:
- Pulse the flour, sugar and sea salt in a food processor until combined.
- Scatter the shortening over the flour mixture and pulse until the mixture starts to look crumbly, about 10 seconds. Scatter the butter over the mixture and pulse about 10 more pulses, until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- Sprinkle 4 tablespoons of ice water over the mixture and pulse until the mixture comes together. If it does not come together, add the remaining water, a few drops at a time, until the dough forms a ball.
- Turn the dough out onto a sheet of plastic wrap, flatten into a disc, and chill for one hour.
- Cut the dough into quarters and roll each piece out on a floured surface until about 1/8” thick. Press into 4 4-inch tartlet pans, cutting off excess. Collect the scraps, roll out, and press into two remaining tartlet pans. Freeze for 15 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 375°F. Score the tartlet crusts with a fork. Press a layer of aluminum foil into crusts and fill with pie weights or dry beans. Bake in the center of the oven for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and weights and bake for another 10 minutes. Cool tart shells completely, about 1 hour.
For the mousse- Step 1:
- Place chocolate and butter in a large, heatproof, microwavable bowl. Heat in the microwave on half-power in 1-minute increments until the chocolate is melted. Stir until mixture is smooth. Whisk in egg yolks, one at a time, until thoroughly combined. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, using a whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on medium speed until foamy. Add cream of tartar, increase speed to high, and beat until mixture holds soft peaks. Slowly add ¼ cup sugar and beat until mixture holds stiff peaks. Transfer egg white mixture to a separate bowl and set aside
- Thoroughly clean and dry the mixer bowl and beater. Beat heavy cream until it begins to thicken. Add vanilla and 2 Tbsp sugar and beat until the cream holds soft peaks.
- Gently fold egg whites into chocolate mixture. Gently fold in whipped cream.
Assembly- Step 1:
- Spoon the mousse into a pastry bag fitted with a large star tip and swirl into cooled tartlet crusts. Chill until set.
- When ready to serve, sprinkle mousse tarts with fleur de sel. Enjoy!
Alexandra Joseph Rabbani is the Executive Chef of Salt of the Earth Bakery in New York City. She lives in Manhattan with her husband & business partner and their three delicious children.
Photo credit: Nathan Scott Hancock