Baking Hermann
Recipes

2 Ingredient Chocolate Mousse

If you ever added a small amount of water to melted chocolate, you’ll have witnessed the unfortunate transformation from a luxurious texture to a stiff paste. The chocolate seized. There is, however, a way to add water to chocolate without it seizing. And what’s even more exciting is that you can use that method to turn the liquid chocolate into a rich mousse.

If you ever added a small amount of water to melted chocolate, you’ll have witnessed the unfortunate transformation from a luxurious texture to a stiff paste. The chocolate seized.

There is, however, a way to add water to chocolate without it seizing. And what’s even more exciting is that you can use that method to turn the liquid chocolate into a rich mousse.

This is a discovery made by the French chemist Hervé This, also known as the father of molecular gastronomy. He realised that if you add a large enough quantity of water, the fats in the chocolate do not clump together, but suspend into a smooth liquid instead. If you then slowly cool the chocolate down while whisking, the bonds begin to form again and trap air inside the fat molecules, thereby creating a mousse.

The process takes barely 10 minutes. You can add the boiling water straight to a bowl with chocolate, let it melt entirely and then whisk it over an ice bath for just 5 minutes. The result is a surprisingly rich mousse with an incredibly pure chocolate flavour. Thanks to the cooled down water, it almost seems refreshing compared to a heavy chocolate dessert.

How much water to chocolate?

I based my recipe on 74% dark chocolate to which I added 0.84x water. When I compared this to other recipes, it seems that with every percent decrease of pure chocolate, you need to add 0.01x less water. The examples below make it a little easier to follow:

For 65% dark chocolate add 75% water (multiply the choocolate by x0.75)
For 70% dark chocolate add 80% water (multiply the choocolate by x0.8)
For 74% dark chocolate add 84% water (multiply the chocolate by x0.84)
For 75% dark chocolate add 85% water (multiply the chocolate by x0.85)

While it’s fine to add a little less (it’ll result in a denser mousse), it’s important not to exceed the suggested amount of water, because the mousse won’t hold its shape. So I’d advise to use a digital scale to weigh out exactly how much you’re adding, rather than eyeballing it with a measuring jug.

Fixing a failed batch

There are three things that can do wrong, all of which are easy to fix by melting the chocolate again and making adjustments.

If the chocolate remains liquid and doesn’t form a mousse at all, there’s not enough fat in the mixture. Add another handful of chocolate, gently melt it all in a sauce pan and whisk it again over the ice bath.

If the mousse becomes too dense at the end, then there’s too much fat and you need to add more water.

The chocolate can also become grainy, which is a sign that you over-whisked it. In that case, just melt it again and give it another go, whisking a little less vigorously and taking the bowl out of the ice a little earlier.

Flavouring the mousse

You can swap some of the water for 1-2 tbsp of dessert wine to flavour the chocolate. Or serve the finished mousse with flakey sea salt to bring out even more of the chocolate notes.

Storage

You can store the finished mousse in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.

serves 6-8

Ingredients

Method

Bring a kettle of water to the boil. In the meantime, add 2 large handfuls of ice cubes (around 500g) to a large bowl and pour in enough cold water to almost reach the top of the ice.

Break the chocolate into a medium bowl (that easily fits into the large bowl) and pour over 210ml of boiling water (don’t exceed this amount or the mousse won’t hold its shape). Whisk it until the chocolate has completely melted.

Now place the bowl with the chocolate into the bowl with the ice and whisk until the chocolate begins to thicken (4-5 minutes), thereby incorporating air. Once it has thickened to a point where the whisk leaves thick ribbons and the surface doesn’t instantly level out when you drizzle the chocolate, remove the bowl from the ice and continue whisking for another 30 seconds as it cools down even further. This happens really quickly, so rather remove it too early and continue whisking it to see if it stiffens up into a mousse. If not, return it to the ice bath and cool it down a little more.

Either spoon the mousse into a glass or serve it on a plate. To do this elegantly, soak a tablespoon in very hot water to heat it up. Then make a quenelle by pushing the warm spoon through and finally around the chocolate mouse for a smooth egg shape.

Storage: Refrigerate for 3-4 days.

As an Amazon Associate I receive a small commission from affiliate links on this page.

2 Ingredient Chocolate Mousse

If you ever added a small amount of water to melted chocolate, you’ll have witnessed the unfortunate transformation from a luxurious texture to a stiff paste. The chocolate seized. There is, however, a way to add water to chocolate without it seizing. And what’s even more exciting is that you can use that method to turn the liquid chocolate into a rich mousse.
5 from 1 vote
Active Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Dessert
Servings 6

Ingredients
  

Instructions
 

  • Bring a kettle of water to the boil. In the meantime, add 2 large handfuls of ice cubes (around 500g) to a large bowl and pour in enough cold water to almost reach the top of the ice.
  • Break the chocolate into a medium bowl (that easily fits into the large bowl) and pour over 210ml of boiling water (don’t exceed this amount or the mousse won’t hold its shape). Whisk it until the chocolate has completely melted.
  • Now place the bowl with the chocolate into the bowl with the ice and whisk until the chocolate begins to thicken (4-5 minutes), thereby incorporating air. Once it has thickened to a point where the whisk leaves thick ribbons and the surface doesn’t instantly level out when you drizzle the chocolate, remove the bowl from the ice and continue whisking for another 30 seconds as it cools down even further. This happens really quickly, so rather remove it too early and continue whisking it to see if it stiffens up into a mousse. If not, return it to the ice bath and cool it down a little more.
  • Either spoon the mousse into a glass or serve it on a plate. To do this elegantly, soak a tablespoon in very hot water to heat it up. Then make a quenelle by pushing the warm spoon through and finally around the chocolate mouse for a smooth egg shape.

Notes

Storage: Refrigerate for 3-4 days.
Print Recipe

4 Comments

  1. Rebecca

    5 stars
    How do you “ melt” the mousse down when it does not set so I can add more chocolate? I assume over a saucepan of simmering water while whisking? That is the only part missing from your recipe. I tried it with milk chocolate but I must have used too much water as it did not even set in the fridge over night.

    Reply
    • Julius Fiedler

      You can melt it the same way as you melted the chocolate (in a bowl over simmering water). It’ll just take a little longer. Try using dark chocolate for your next batch, if you can, as you need the right amount of cacao butter for it to seize into a mousse.

      Reply
  2. Kristien

    Hello, would this also work with 99%-100% chocolate?

    Reply
    • Julius Fiedler

      Ooh, interesting question. I haven’t tried that yet, but in theory it should work. If you use 100% dark chocolate, you will probably need to add the same weight of boiling water.

      Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




Recent Recipes

Peanut Spread

Peanut Spread

Previously, I've made tofu out of chickpeas, green peas, red lentils, black beans and, the traditional one, soybeans. Which is another way of saying that you can make tofu out of pretty much any legume. If you'd like to know more about this, check out my Any Legume...

Çiğ Köfte (Turkish Bulgur Balls)

Çiğ Köfte (Turkish Bulgur Balls)

Who would have thought that the Turkish Health Ministry would play a part in creating one of the country's most iconic plant-based street food dishes? Çiğ Köfte has long been a staple food in the southeastern parts of Türkiye. However, it is traditionally made with a...

Curry Leaves Ice Cubes

Curry Leaves Ice Cubes

Curry leaves grow in abundance in India and are easily available in most shops for a few rupees. But if you live elsewhere you might find it difficult to source them. The trouble is that curry leaves are an incredibly aromatic and delicious addition to Indian food....

Kenyan Chapati

Kenyan Chapati

These flakey flatbreads are the perfect companion to Ndengu, a rich Kenyan mung bean curry. Although called chapati, it is similar to Indian Laccha Paratha, one of the many cross-cultural influences from the Indian subcontinent that workers brought to Kenya in the...

Ndengu (Kenyan Mung Bean Curry)

Ndengu (Kenyan Mung Bean Curry)

In the 19th century, thousands of Indian workers were employed in Kenya to build a vast local railway network. They brought with them their own food culture and used ingredients and cooking methods to create dishes that felt close to home. Today, many Kenyan dishes...

Hazelnut Tofu (Hazelnut Dofu)

Hazelnut Tofu (Hazelnut Dofu)

Imagine the flavour of roasted nuts captured into a creamy pudding. That's what Hazelnut Dofu is all about. It's inspired by Goma Dofu, a traditional Japanese appetiser that is made with sesame seeds and kuzu starch. But you can follow the same method and turn any nut...

Potaje de Garbanzos (Spanish Chickpea, Potato & Spinach Stew)

Potaje de Garbanzos (Spanish Chickpea, Potato & Spinach Stew)

During my search for traditional plant-based dishes from around the world two themes reappear time and again. Religion and poverty. Both of these have long shaped food cultures towards naturally vegan options. Potaje de Garbanzos is a great example. The comforting...

Coconut Milk (1 Ingredient)

Coconut Milk (1 Ingredient)

Making your own coconut milk from scratch might seem futile. After all, it's easily available in cans in most stores. However, many brands use added thickeners and stabilisers to give the coconut milk a creamy texture that doesn't separate, and even organic coconut...

Ugali (Tanzanian Maize Meal)

Ugali (Tanzanian Maize Meal)

Across the African Great Lakes region, you'll find versions of Ugali. Most parts of Tanzania and Kenya share the same name for it, while it's known as Sadza in Zimbabwe. The Malawian version is called Nsima and was even added to the UNESCO Representative List of the...

Pani Walalu (Sri Lankan New Year Sweet)

Pani Walalu (Sri Lankan New Year Sweet)

Sinking your teeth into Pani Walalu is a textural delight as much as it is a flavourful sensation. Crispy and sweet on the outside, soft and slightly savoury on the inside, these fermented urad dal sweets are an unusual but extremely satisfying treat. They are...

Tahdig-Inspired Crispy Saffron Rice

Tahdig-Inspired Crispy Saffron Rice

Tahdig is a culinary highlight of Persian cooking. Perfectly steamed rice made better by giving it an incredibly crispy bottom layer. Traditionally, it's made with butter and/or yoghurt, but I've always been craving a naturally plant-based version of this crispy rice....

How to Bloom Saffron

How to Bloom Saffron

Measured by weight, saffron is valued more than gold. It takes 75,000 blossoms to produce 1 pound of saffron, and each individual stigma needs to be picked by hand at the prime of its season. Add to the the intense aroma and flavour of saffron and it's no surprise...