Legendary singer Patti LaBelle gives dessert lovers recipes to sing about – for delicious cakes, mousses and more from her newest cookbook, Desserts LaBelle
Serves 6 to 8
- • 8 oz semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
- • 1¾ cups heavy cream, divided
- • 3 tbsp sugar
- • 3 large egg yolks
- • 2 tbsp dark rum, brandy, orange liqueur, orange juice or brewed coffee
- • 1 tsp vanilla extract
- • whipped cream, for serving
- Melt the chocolate in the top part of a double boiler over barely simmering water, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat. Place a wire sieve over the bowl of chocolate.
- Heat ½ cup of the heavy cream with the sugar in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring often to dissolve the sugar, until the mixture is simmering. Whisk the egg yolks in a small bowl, then whisk in the hot cream mixture. Return to the saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly with a heatproof spatula until the mixture has thickened to the consistency of eggnog, 1 to 2 minutes. Strain the custard through the sieve into the chocolate to remove any bits of cooked egg white. Add the rum and vanilla and whisk until smooth.
- Place the bowl with the chocolate mixture in a larger bowl of iced water. Let stand, whisking occasionally, until the mixture is cool but not set, 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the bowl from the iced water.
- Whip the remaining 1¼ cups cream in a chilled medium bowl until it forms stiff peaks. Stir about one-fourth of the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture to lighten it, then fold in the remaining cream. Divide the mousse among 6 to 8 ramekins, custard cups or serving bowls. Cover each with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled and set, at least 2 hours or up to 2 days.
- Just before serving, top each mousse with a dollop of the whipped cream and serve chilled.
Already a bestselling food author, Patti had never considered doing a dessert book, given her diabetes diagnosis in 1994. But the singer was spurred on by fans of her sweet potato pie (sold at Walmart in the U.S.) and her son, Zuri, who reminded her that the LaBelle family has a treasure trove of decadent recipes! They’re all in this book, along with low-sugar, reduced-fat creations which, says Patti, “I enjoy every bit as much as my old-school treats.” – CHRIS DANIELS
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