Julia Child smiling
How Julia Child’s Chocolate Mousse Depends On Eggs Alone For A Fluffy Texture
In an early episode of "The French Chef," Julia Child showcased her chocolate mousse recipe from "Mastering the Art of French Cooking," which featured eggs.
In Child's traditional French recipe, she uses separated egg yolks and whites to achieve the chocolate mousse's thick, fluffy texture.
Child fuses the stiff egg whites and pâte à bombe, aka egg yolks whisked with sugar. The yolks' fat thickens and stabilizes the mousse while the whites give it body and lightness.
To start, Child splits 4 eggs, separating the yolks and the whites. She adds ¾ cup of sugar and orange liqueur to the yolks and beats them all together until the mixture thickens.
The sugar draws out the water in the yolks, activating the fat proteins in the egg to thicken. The mixture gets whisked over a double boiler to become foamy and thicken.
The egg yolk mix is added to some chocolate that has been melted in hot coffee. The egg whites and a little bit of salt are whisked in a bowl until they begin to form soft peaks.
Fold the egg whites gently into the chocolate mixture, then chill the mousse for 2 hours, or overnight. This will ensure the mousse's texture seems lighter than air.