Tuesday, December 18, 2007

A Mousse By Any Other Name...

I was going to try to figure out the fat/calorie/protein ratios before posting this, but it hasn't happened yet, and since I promised this recipe to some friends I'm just gonna put it up:

Tofu Chocolate Mousse
This is a recipe that I've modified and played with...if you let the mixture "rest" for a day or so before serving, the tofu-y aftertaste disappears as the tofu absorbs the flavor of the chocolate.
After resting, you can mix the mousse with just about anything, or use it as a base for other chocolate dishes. Your finished dessert will have a different denseness depending on the texture of the tofu you start with: firm tofu will result in a thicker/more dense mixture; silken, more creamy and puddinglike. I have used extra firm, and made truffles...

• 2 12 ounce packages of firm tofu
• 20 ounces of bittersweet chocolate chips--approximately 1 bag plus 2 cups (or heck, you can throw in both bags if you want to make it really rich, and for a real treat, go for those 70% cocoa chocolate bars!)
• 1 tbsp plus 1 tsp vanilla extract
• 1/8 tsp salt
• 1/8 tsp finely ground pepper
• 2-3 Tbsp powdered sugar (optional)

For crust:
• 1 package graham crackers, ground
• 1/4 cup granulated sugar
• 6 tablespoons butter, melted

• Using a stick mixer or food processor, puree tofu WELL. The more thorough you are in this step, the smoother and balanced the texture and flavor will be. Using a blender is perhaps the most inefficient way--very messy!

• Add vanilla, salt, and pepper to tofu puree. Salt brings out the nuances of the chocolate--try it, it really works! The pepper adds a bit more flavor undertones as well. You can omit either/both of these, if you like.

• While blending, you can melt your chocolate in the microwave or over a double boiler. If microwaving, put in on high for 1 minute, then stir, then microwave for 30 second intervals until completely melted, stirring between each so as not to burn your chocolate. If using a double boiler, be sure that you do NOT get water in your chocolate, or it will seize up and become a glumpy mess.

• Add chocolate to tofu and blend until color is uniform. Since the mix needs to rest for the flavors to blend, don't be surprised if it tastes like, well, tofu. If you like, here is where you would add the powdered sugar if you prefer your chocolate more on the sweet side.

• Make your crust:
grind graham crackers either by crushing them in a plastic bag, or throwing them in your coffee/spice grinder. Melt your butter and mix in graham crackers and sugar. Mixture will be moist and crumbly--press into bottom of pie or springform pan.

• Scoop mousse mixture into crust, and refrigerate for at least an hour--frankly, overnight is better because the tofu taste gets fainter the longer you let it "rest."

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