Chocolate Mousse

Adapted from Elizabeth David | At Elizabeth David’s Table | Ecco, 2011

The chocolate for this chocolate recipe can be melted in a tablespoon of black coffee rather than water. A tablespoon of rum added instead will do no harm.–Elizabeth David

LC Instant Gratification Note

Behold, this chocolate mousse recipe is a seemingly sophisticated dessert that comes together in minutes from just two pantry staples. Right?! You may wish to stash this little number in your apron pocket for those all-too-frequent occasions that require a fix, whether fancy or just fancy free. While the appeal of this mousse is quite current, bear in mind, the recipe itself may seem somewhat dated, melting the on the stovetop rather than in the microwave and omitting sugar so as to err on the bitter edge. We’re of the opinion that, like wrinkles and other eccentricities born of a long life well lived, these charming traits add character. We think Elizabeth David would agree.

Raw Egg Reminder Note: Hey, in case you hadn’t noticed, this recipe contains raw egg. Please be mindful if making it for anyone for whom this is a potential no-no.

Chocolate Mousse

  • Quick Glance
  • 5 M
  • 20 M
  • Serve 1


  • 1 ounce semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, per person
  • 1 tablespoon water, per person
  • 1 large egg, per person


  • 1. Melt the chocolate in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over a low flame with the water. Stir the chocolate until it is smooth. Let it cool slightly, perhaps 5 minutes or so.
  • 2. Separate the egg(s). Beat the yolk(s) in a bowl. Slowly stir the melted chocolate into the yolk(s).
  • 3. Whip the whites until very stiff and gently fold them over and over into the chocolate, so that they are perfectly blended, otherwise the chocolate may sink to the bottom. Place the mousse in ramekins or a lovely glass if making it for one or two, or a soufflé dish if serving several guests. Check so that the mixture just about comes to the top of the dish, as nothing is sadder than a small amount of mousse hiding at the bottom of a huge glass bowl.
  • 4. Refrigerate for 10 minutes if your craving is intense, 30 minutes if you have a little patience, or 3 hours or so if you’re serving at a dinner party. Don’t refrigerate it much longer, as this tends to make the texture too hard.

Chocolate Mousse Recipe © 2011 Estate of Elizabeth David. Photo © 2011 David Loftus. All rights reserved.

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