Sunday, June 27, 2010

Daring Bakers - Chocolate Pavlovas with Chocolate Marscapone Mousse

I love pavlova and meringues. There is something about that crisp, crunchy shell with the soft, mallowy centre that really appeals to me, regardless of whether it is dressed up with anything else. The Kiwis and the Australians hotly debate who invented the pavlova, named after the prima ballerina, Anna Pavlova, because someone thought it resembled her tutu. I don't really mind who actually invented it - it is is a fine dessert, regardless, and one which has always been a favourite with my brother and I (though not with my Mum, who finds it too sweet.

This leads me to this month's Daring Bakers challenge, which involved a very upmarket version of the pavlova, which will rarely be seen at an Aussie barbecue, no matter how delicious it is.

The June 2010
Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Dawn of Doable and Delicious. Dawn challenged the Daring Bakers’ to make Chocolate Pavlovas and Chocolate Mascarpone Mousse. The challenge recipe is based on a recipe from the book Chocolate Epiphany by Francois Payard.

I had never made chocolate pavlovas (or meringues really) before, so this was new for me. I am still living away from my cooking gear, so I didn't have a piping bag or the patience to persevere with paper piping bags, and I made my pavlovas free-form:

These turned out well, but I like their vanilla cousins better.

We also had to make a marscapone cream to drizzle over the dessert:

This cream was delicious, and my favourite part of the dessert; I actually liked it best as a plain creme anglaise before the marscapone was added, but in the end, it was still delicious. It was a shame that so little of it was used on the dessert - in the end, I ate half of it and tossed the rest. (Someone made icecream out of their leftover marscapone cream, but icecream is the last thing that I want right now - you just have to feel the brisk temperatures outside to know why.)

The final element was a chocolate mousse, flavoured with orange:

This was my least favourite part of this dessert - it was immensely rich, and I have to confess to throwing out what I didn't use on assembling the dessert. I assembled my dessert with free-form quinelles of mousse, as I refrigerated my mousse after making it in advance, and it set to a point where piping it wasn't going to work.

In short, the dessert is assembled by piping (or in my case, spooning) chocolate mousse on top of the pavlovas, and drizzling them with marscapone cream. The richness of the mousse was balanced out somewhat in the assembled dessert, but I found the whole effect rather overwhelming.

I served these pavlovas as dessert when I had a guest to dinner, and they did make a great dinner party dessert - my guest enjoyed them.

Thanks for being our host this month, Dawn. To get the recipe for this dessert, visit Dawn's site. To check out how the other Daring Bakers fared with making this dessert, visit the Daring Bakers blogroll.


SilverMoon Dragon said...

It makes me sad I ran out of ingredients for the cream now, after reading your comments on it. I made my mousse into a whole bunch of teaspoon sized quenelles, and kept them in the fridge like that, perfect for a five second chocolate hit.

And it's never too cold for ice cream - you just have to serve with piping hot apple pie or chocolate pudding or even pancakes!
(she types freezing her backside off in Melbourne!)

Ahaha - my word verification for this comment is "colde" - what are the odds?

Anonymous said...

This does sound very rich. I'm impressed that you made this without your own kitchen supplies!

Ivy said...

I've never made any chocolate Pavlovas before but I also think I would like the traditional ones better. It's really difficult to make these challenges without having your own equipment. I know I cannot function in somebody else's kitchen. You did a great job.

TLC said...

that chocolate mousse sounds really intense... the whole thing sounds like a chocoholic's delight :)

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

I've always loved pavlova too! Yours looks great! Mine goes live tomorrow :D

Aparna Balasubramanian said...

I did like the mousse personally, though I wish it hadn't been so rich.
Yes it does set in the fridge. I just kep mine out for a little while and I could pipe it easily.

Think your pavs look good anyways.

Johanna GGG said...

trying to remember if I have ever had chocolate pav - not sure - but I know that throwing out is never fun - I had to throw out a little of my sour cream chocolate cake this week and wasn't happy about that - am sure that not having all your baking gear on hand make it even harder to do stuff with leftovers

Nutmeg Nanny said...

These look great!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Great job! Those look delicious!



Yasmeen said...

Well done! I had to replace the heavy mousse with a a lighter vegan mousse.

Brenda said...

Love pavlova but now a chocolate pavlova? Wow it's a must try! Thank you!

The Caked Crusader said...

I've never had chocolate pav before - sounds awesome. It's like pavlova...but better!

Deeba PAB said...

I like what you did with your pavs. Freeform pavlovas look rustic and moorish = YUM! Sorry about the mousse. I skipped a few bits too to reduce the calories!

Audax said...

Wow it looks so great and love the discussion about pav's and yes this recipe produces nothing like a normal Aussie pav. Great photo also. Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.

sunita said...

Yes, the mousse was rich, but I think I indulged myself a bit :-)Personall, I too prefer the vanilla version better.

LittleRed said...

Great job getting it done without all your kitchen stuff! I agree with you on the filling....I am tempted to try the chocolate pavlova again....sometime in the future with a more traditional filling so it's not so intense in flavour.

Baker at Law said...

Great job! I totally agree the chocolate mousse was really rich. I have to admitt I still have the left overs in the fridge. Your dessert plated up gorgeously.

I also just wanted to say Hi to another baking attorney :-)