I know, I know. I’m starting a wee bit early but I didn’t want you to think this was a joke. Also, I really need to start this week with a super treat. I need spring. I don’t think even last year I was this desperate.
It’s all eggs this month and today is starting with a beyond decadent dessert that looks really freaky amazing but is still realistic for any day of the week. We actually had this last Thursday after a long day at work and even a trip to the grocery store.
The real trick is to have your eggs at room temperature. Do this and you’ll have fluffy, gorgeous meringue.
I’ve actually started to leave my eggs out of the fridge all the time now. We get ours from a local farmer, fresh from the hen and according to a bit of research they are good for around 4 weeks unrefrigerated. Eggs don’t last a fraction of that time in my house anyway.
How about a really yummy tart then?
One with a shortbread crust made with lots of butter, icing sugar and just enough flour to hold it together. You don’t even need to roll it out. You just plunk it in the pan and press it into a tart pan.
While your crust is baking get some REALLY good quality dark chocolate and melt it over simmering water with a bit of sugar. When it’s melted add a couple of tablespoons of the chocolate to fat yolks and vanilla and whisk it vigorously before adding in the rest of the chocolate. Why? Well, scrambled egg yolks with sugar and chocolate sounds pretty good in theory but in practise…add in a bit and whisk, you temper the egg yolks and end up with a smooth mixture.
Do the same with your egg whites that you’ve beaten until stiff. Add in a bit at once and then fold the rest and you don’t deflate your mousse. Warning-this is like catnip to not only everyone in the house but also on the entire street. Everyone and their brother will want a wee taste of this mixture.
Top your cooled crust with mousse, let it set in the fridge and you are good to go. Actually, expect for there to be a fair amount of little or not so little finger prints in it. I’m warning you again-this dish is catnip.
A few raspberries wouldn’t go amiss either.
- Shortbread Crust:
- 1 cup flour
- ½ cup icing sugar
- ½ cup butter
- 5 eggs separated and whites beaten to stiff peaks
- 2 cups chopped dark chocolate
- ⅓ cup sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla (I really like to use the paste)
- Combine shortbread pastry ingredients until it resembles coarse crumbs. Press into a tart pan and bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees until slightly browned.
- Let cool.
- Meanwhile; in a bowl over simmering water melt together the chocolate and sugar. When melted add a couple of spoons into the yolks (and vanilla) and stir before adding it back into the rest of the chocolate. Add a scoop of the beaten egg whites and stir (this lightens the mixture) before adding in the rest and lightly folding them in.
- Place in the tart shell (without the requisite portion that a demanding 4 year old will require) and chill until firm-about 30 minutes.