White Chocolate Mousse with Champagne Apricots

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My fondness for mousse is well-documented on this blog, so I know a dish that’s both sweet and adventurous is very much overdue.

But it’s been too long since I’ve posted a dessert recipe, and my sister (resident sweets expert) is busy being accepted by graduate schools. So mousse recipes from an extremely proud brother is what you get!

And let’s be honest, it’s not like you’ll be disappointed at all with this dish. The silky white chocolate mousse and hazelnuts are the perfect backdrop for the crown jewel of the dish – dried apricots reconstituted in champagne. These morsels are each a wonderful burst of mildly sweet, perfectly tart and lightly alcoholic flavor that perfectly compliment the creaminess of the mousse and crunchiness of the hazelnut.

One tip: be sure to save the champagne used to reconstitute the dried apricots and serve either by itself or mixed with regular champagne. It’s the perfect drink to accompany this dish!

White Chocolate Mousse with Champagne Apricots

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Equipment – Several non-reactive bowls, whisk

Ingredients

  • 6 oz. white chocolate (high-grade recommended)
  • 3 egg whites
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup dried apricots, diced
  • 3/4 cup champagne
  • 1/4 cup hazelnuts, finely chopped
  • additional white chocolate to serve, shaved or slivered

Instructions

  1. In a double broiler, heat the white chocolate until melted. Remove from heat.
  2. In a non-reactive bowl, add the egg whites and sugar. Whisk vigorously until doubled in volume and forming soft peaks.
  3. In another bowl, vigorously whisk the heavy whipping cream until thickened and doubled in volume. Add the whipped egg whites and gently fold into the cream using a spatula. Slowly incorporate the melted white chocolate into the mixture by drizzling it in and continuing to fold in with the spatula.
  4. Pour the mousse mixture into the desired vessel – martini glasses or champagne flutes are both good choices – and let sit in the refrigerator for at least four hours.
  5. At least 30 minutes before serving, combine the dried apricots and champagne in a bowl and refrigerate.
  6. To serve, remove the mousse from the refrigerator and add a layer each of apricots, hazelnut and white chocolate slivers.
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