I'm definitely a food snob of sorts. I've been known to get all uppity about faux this and that, things masquerading as other things. Margarine. Tofurkey. Miracle Whip. Why bother? (In truth, I once loved Miracle Whip on a tomato sandwich.) But G's digestive issues have made me realize that substitutions are sometimes necessary. And while gluten-free bread may not be worth the bother, certain gluten-free foods are quite nice in their own right. Anyone who's had treats from Babycakes
knows what I'm talking about. So it may not come as a total surprise when I tell you that this recipe for a decadent and velvety smooth chocolate mousse is—wait for it—vegan
. That's right—no eggs and no cream. I was very skeptical the first time I made this. It's suspiciously easy, requiring absolutely no whipping at all. Various recipes for vegan chocolate mousse had been popping up online, some with avocado, others with coconut milk—I think I even remember one from Jean Georges! This is the one I arrived at after a bit of experimentation.
It combines good quality chocolate—I usually incorporate some Mexican chocolate infused with chile
—with silken tofu and a hit of Kalhua, because I find that coffee beautifully accentuates the flavor of chocolate. You melt the chocolate in a double boiler, whizz it in a blender with the remaining few ingredients and chill it for a few hours. You will be astonished by the results which, incidentally, are relatively low in calories and fat. I like to serve this mousse with a topping of candied pumpkin seeds, using this recipe
but with powdered ginger and cinnamon for the spices. It's a nice textural counterpoint, but you could also try a little chopped ginger, toasted almonds or a spoonful of crème fraîche (throwing vegan caution to the wind).
Chocolate Mousse (Vegan)
— 1/2 cup organic chocolate soy milk
— 10 ounces best quality semi- or bittersweet chocolate
— 12 ounces silken tofu
— 2 tablespoons Kahlua
— 1/4 teaspoon almond extract, optional
— sea salt
In a small saucepan, bring the chocolate milk to a simmer. Cool while you melt the chocolate in a double boiler. (If you don't have one, just use a metal or glass bowl set over a pan of hot water.) Remove from heat.
Combine the soy milk, silken tofu, melted chocolate, Kahlua, almond extract, if using, and a generous pinch of sea salt in a blender and puree until completely smooth. (An immersion blender also works here.) Taste and adjust for flavor, as needed.
Chill in one large bowl or 6 ramekins for at least 2 hours or overnight. The mousse sets up perfectly as it cools.