200 grams good quality chocolate, chopped
30 grams butter, diced
2 tablespoons brandy
3 tablespoons caster sugar
200 grams dried cherries
100 grams sugar
1¼ cups water
3 tablespoons cognac or brandy
softly whipped cream
Mousse: Melt the chocolate and butter in a bowl over a saucepan of simmering water then remove from the heat. Do not let the chocolate get too hot or it will be oily and go grainy when you stir in the egg yolks. Separate the eggs. Combine the egg yolks and brandy and gently stir into the chocolate. Beat the egg whites to soft peaks then scatter over the sugar and beat until thick and glossy.
Using a large metal spoon, stir a ¼ of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture to lighten it. Fold in the remaining egg whites, gently but thoroughly, leaving no white streaks in the mixture. Pour into a serving bowl and refrigerate until set.
Cherries: Combine all the ingredients in a saucepan and slowly bring to the boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Simmer for 10 minutes. Cool.
To serve: Tip the cherries and whipped cream into serving bowls. Pass the mousse, allowing everyone to help themselves. Top with a spoonful of cherries and cream.
Cook's Tip: Prunes can be used in place of the dried cherries.
Menu: Serve with Braised Duck with Calvados and Apples.