When Julie Nesting of Edmonds set out ot make a decadent chocolate mousse for her guests last weekend, she altered the Nordstrom: Entertaining at Home recipe slightly by using Hershey's special dark cocoa instead of unsweetened cocoa powder.
She was slightly alarmed at how dark the dessert turned out - it looked...like dirt. Which gave her a great idea that we are now stealing due to its brilliance: the Tulip dessert (reminiscient of mud pies you made as a kid, minus the gummy worms and plus a lot more class):
- 3/4 pound cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups cugar
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup Hershey's special dark cocoa
- 2 1/4 cups heavy (whipping) cream
- Semisweet chocolate savings and/or finely ground espresso beans for garnish
- Six tulips (real or fake). Don't feel beholden to tulips - you can use whatever you find in your garden.
- Green straws
- Six small glass cups/pots
- Using an electric mixer set on medium speed, beat together the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla extract until well combined.
- Increase the speed to high and continue mixing until the mixture is light and fluffy and somewhat increased in volume, about 2 minutes.
- Reduce speed to medium and add the cocoa powder a little at a time. Continue mixing until the cocoa is fully incorporated, about 2 minutes.
- In a separate bowl, using the electric mixer set on high speed, whip the cream until medium-firm peaks form.
- Spoon half of the whipped cream onto the chocolate mixture and, using a rubber spatula, gently fold it in, being careful not to overmix and deflate the mixture.
- When the cream is fairly well incorporated but some white streaks remain, fold in the rest of the whipped cream until no white streaks remain.
- Cover and place in the refrigerator until chilled, about 2 hours.
- When chilled, spoon about a cup of the mousse into glass cups/pots, and top with shaved chocolate, finely ground espresso beans, or both.
- Slip the tulip stem into the straw (this keep the mousse and flower 'clean') and position in the pot.
Enjoy! Thanks Julie!