Chocolate Mousse

“I know you forgot about me but it’s okay I won’t tell anyone.”

On Tuesdays, Grand Rounds for Internal Medicine are held at 8am at the hospital I’m at right now. As medical students and residents, we show up at 7am every day for sign-out (the team on at night tells the day team what happened to their patients etc), eat breakfast depending on the resident (mine believes in this thank goodness), and then round on patients. On Tuesdays, you see as many patients as you can before 8 with enough time to make it to the conference room to snag a seat in the back where no one will see if you (accidentally) fall asleep despite the 2 cups of coffee you’ve already had (really just one cup but a 16- or 24-oz cup is really not a single cup at all, let’s not kid ourselves).

Yesterday, however, while I was sitting at the nurses’ station trying to copy down labs for one of my patients, my two residents proceeded to walk by, chit-chatting, and forgot to pick me up to go to rounds. Being the good little student that I am, I saw them, grabbed my stuff, and proceeded to trot after them without saying a word.
Halfway to the elevator, my one resident saw me out of the corner of her eye, scowled, and didn’t look my way again.

She thought I was a creepo stalker.

I’m not a stalker! I’m your med student! Remember me? We’ve been together for over a week now! We laugh and I’m eager to learn? Hello?

When we finally reached the elevator and they had no choice but to turn around they figured it out.

We had a good laugh. I really do love my residents and they’ve never done anything mean to me whatsoever to make me think they intentionally left me behind. All was quickly forgiven and forgotten.

The same thing happened with me and chocolate mousse except it was I who forgot, not the mousse.

Chocolate mousse was one of the first things I tried out as a young baker. Sometime around 13 or 14 I started trying out things other than boxed cakes and mousse and apple pie were at the top of my list. I often made mousse throughout high school because it was light and comforted me through the stresses of teenage angst (I grew up in the era of Dawson’s Creek) while making me feel as if I wasn’t eating a bajillion calories that would contribute to any amount of embarrassing weight gain. I was, after all, trying to obtain the affection of some popular guy who didn’t even know my name. Must. Be. Skinny. So. Guy. Notices. You. [Mind you, I graduated with 700 other kids so this was quite the task I was setting myself to. By the way, the guy never noticed me. Surprise surprise!] But, yes, mousse became one of my favorite things to make.

For some reason, I haven’t attempted a mousse since those high school days and when I thought of it the other day, knew I had to make it. I don’t know what recipe I made in high school but the one I found from David Lebovitz definitely did the trick. Oh and bonus? Boy loved it too. And we don’t really care if the other gets fat. [Boy, if you’re reading this, please don’t get fat. That can lead to diabetes, cancer, and heart problems. I know you know this and that you’re more conscious of healthy eating than I am but just thought I’d remind you. Kisses!]

So chocolate mousse, I’m sorry I forgot you for all those years. It’s nothing compared to my residents forgetting me for two minutes. But I’m glad you’ve forgiven me and tasted just as good as I remember. You’re the bestest. Let’s do this again sometime, yes?

Chocolate Mousse
adapted from David Lebovitz who adapted it from Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child.

Makes 6-8 servings depending on the size. I opted for 6.

4 large eggs, separated
pinch of salt
2/3 c, plus 1 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
6 oz bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
6 oz unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/4 c dark-brewed coffee
2 tbsp dark rum
1 tbsp water

Beat the egg whites with the salt until soft peaks. Whip in the tbsp of sugar and beat until thick and shiny, but not completely stiff. Add vanilla.

In a medium bowl, place the chocolate, butter, and coffee. Heat the bowl over a pot of simmering water (about 1/3 full), stirring, until smooth. Remove from heat.

Fill a large bowl with ice water and set aside. In another large bowl [bowl #4!], set over the pot of simmering water, whisk [or use a hand mixer] the egg yolks with 2/3 cup of sugar, the rum, and water for about 3 minutes until the mixture is thick, like runny mayonnaise. Remove from heat and place the bowl of yolks in the bowl of ice water. Beat until cool and thick.

Fold the chocolate mixture into the egg yolks. Fold one-third of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture, then fold in the remainder of the whites just until incorporate. Don’t over-fold or the mousse will collapse! Transfer the mousse to a serving bowl or divide into serving dishes, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, until firm.


– Sharlene

1 Comment »

  1. Joanne Said:

    Yeah so internal medicine does NOT sound fun. I don’t know how you do it. That is way too early for rounding. If you ask me.

    I made my first mousse last summer and it was some kind of fantastic. I really need to try this one…dark chocolate dreamy.

    I have to say I laughed quite a bit at your trying to stay skinny to get the guy in high school thing. I felt that exact same way in college. I guess I still kind of do. Just need to find the perfect guy to “get”. And then we can get fat together.

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