Monday, 23 August 2010

Earl grey & baileys milk chocolate mousse cake

I realized its been about a month since my last post.  For 2 weeks I was away in Europe on a holiday and upon return work got the better of me for another 2 weeks... It wasn't until this weekend that I finally found some time for therapeutic baking!  

I first made this mousse cake about a year ago when earl grey flavored desserts got very popular in Hong Kong.  This was before I started this blog, hence it was never written about in a post.  I wish I had a shorter and more fanciful name that could adequately describe the perfect blend of earl grey, baileys liquor and chocolate... well, if you have any suggestions feel free to let me know!

There are 3 main parts to this dessert: butter génoise as base, a layer of baileys milk chocolate mousse set over the génoise in the middle, and earl grey mousse (in a dome shape) on the top.  A layer of dark chocolate wrap is added round the mousse cake to finish off, adding both flavor and aesthetics.  It might all sound very time consuming given the many parts to this but each part takes only a short amount of time to complete.  None of the steps are too complicated.  Also, the 2 mousses are set separately and assembled only when both are ready so saving a considerable amount of time. For me, the unforgettable taste of earl grey, baileys and chocolate deliciously harmonized in one single dessert makes it worth it! =P

Recipe below makes 8 individual cakes using 6-cm cake rings & dome molds

1. For the butter génoise
-  2 eggs
- 40g sugar
- 40g plain flour, sifted
- 20g unsalted butter

2. For the baileys milk chocolate mousse
- 80g milk couverture
- 130g whipping cream
- 20g baileys liquor
- 1 sheet gelatin (2.5g)

3. For the earl grey mousse
- 11g earl grey tea leaves
- 125g fresh milk
- 175g whipping cream
- 50g egg yolks
- 40g sugar
- 2.5 sheets gelatin

1. For the butter génoise
Preheat over to 180 C.  Hand-whisk eggs and sugar over bain marie till mixture reaches 40 C.  Using an electrical whisk, beat eggs and sugar on high speed till fluffy and peaks form.  Fold flour into egg mixture in 3 batches.  Be careful not to overmix. Melt butter over bain marie, add a scoop of egg & flour mixture and mix well.  Fold mixture back into remaining egg & flour mixture and fold gently till batter surface is uniformly shiny.  Pour into 9-inch round cake tin and bake for 18 mins.  Let cool before cutting into small 5-cm rounds placed at the bottom of lined 6-cm cake rings.

2. For the baileys milk chocolate mousse
Beat whipping cream on medium speed till soft peak forms, set aside.  Soak gelatin sheet in cold water for a few minutes till it blooms.  Melt gelatin sheet over bain marie, then add 1 teaspoon of whipped cream and mix well.  Keep gelatin mixture over bain marie.  Melt milk couverture over bain marie.  When its fully melted, fold in 1/3 whipped cream, then add in gelatin mixture and mix well.  Fold in remaining 2/3 whipped cream into mixture, then gently mix in baileys.  Pour mousse into lined cake rings over butter génoise.  Leave for about 2 hours in refrigerator till set.

3. For the earl grey mousse
Soak gelatin sheets in cold water for a few minutes till it blooms. Prepare earl grey milk by boiling earl grey leaves and milk in a small sauce pan.  Cover sauce pan for 5 minutes after boiling to intensify tea flavor in the milk  Strain leaves and ensure there is 80g of earl grey milk for the mousse. Boil prepared earl grey milk and whipping cream together.  Whisk egg yolk and caster sugar till frothy, then pour in 1/3 of earl grey mixture and mix well.  Pour egg mixture back into remaining 2/3 earl grey mixture and boil, stirring constantly, till mixture thickens slightly.  Add gelatin leaves and mix well.  Pour mousse into 8 pieces of 6-cm dome molds and leave for about 2 hours in refrigerator till set.

4. Assembly
Remove baileys milk chocolate mousse from cake rings (using hot towel or flame torch).  Gently remove earl grey mousse from dome molds (by carefully dipping bottom of molds in hot water, taking care not to allow water into the mousse) and place each dome on top of each baileys milk chocolate mousse layer.  Wrap exterior of individual cakes with dark chocolate, leaving top of dome layer visible.  Top with dark chocolate decoration if desired.


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