Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Easter Sunday

On Sunday we all went over to Ben and Whit's for a "Bring your own meat" BBQ. (By "all" I mean, me and Nate, Ben and Whit, Jillian, Ashley, Doug and Jackie (Ben's bro and his wife), and Mackay (Nate's bro) and his girlfriend Ariel, who by the way is so cute, and very fun!) We had yummy pasta salad, spinach salad, and our choice of meat. Then I made a delicious dessert. White Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Cake (Recipe to follow).

The boys all had adorable matching outfits (thank you Grandma Lenie!). We tried to get a picture of them all together, but believe it or not, this was the best we could do!

They were much more cooperative when we just held them.

After dinner, the boys had an easter egg hunt outside. When they all went to bed, we brought out Settlers of Catan and had a VERY rousing game, which Nate and I WON!! Yeah, we totally kicked trash. I would have to say that that was definately the highlight of the night!

Here is the recipe for the cake I made. It is from last April's Martha Stewart Living. I've made it a couple of times, and it is always so delicious! It is basically a glorified strawberry shortcake. Plus it looks so pretty. I think it would be really good for a shower dessert.

White Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Cake:

1 Pound strawberries, hulled and halved, plus 2 cups sliced strawberries
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
8 Ounces white chocolate, finely chopped
1 1/4 Teaspoons unflavored gelatin
2 Cups heavy cream
2 Tablespoons confectioners' sugar
Vegetable oil, cooking spray
1 Cup sifted cake flour, plus more for baking sheet
5 large eggs plus 2 egg yolks
3/4 Cup sugar
Pinch of salt
1 Tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2/3 Cup heavy cream
12 Ounces white chocolate, finely chopped
Pinch of salt
2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Whole and halved strawberries, for garnish

Make the mousse: Purée halved strawberries in a food processor. Pass through a very fine sieve into a bowl (you should have about 1 cup purée). Stir in 1 tablespoon lemon juice; set aside.

Melt chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, stirring until smooth; set aside.

Put 1/4 cup cool water into a small bowl. Sprinkle gelatin over top; let stand until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir 1/4 cup cream and the confectioners’ sugar in a small saucepan; bring to a simmer over medium heat. Add gelatin mixture, and stir until gelatin has dissolved. Pour into bowl with the melted chocolate, and stir until smooth. Whisk in 3/4 cup strawberry purée; reserve remaining 1/4 cup purée.

Put remaining 1 3/4 cups cream into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat on medium-high speed until medium peaks form. Whisk one-third of the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture. Fold in the remaining whipped cream using a large rubber spatula. Refrigerate 1 hour. Stir 1 tablespoon lemon juice into the sliced berries. Fold berries into mousse; refrigerate 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees;. Make the cake: Coat a 12-by-18-by-1-inch rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray. Line bottom with parchment paper, and spray parchment. Dust with flour, and tap out excess.

Put eggs, egg yolks, and sugar into the heatproof bowl of an electric mixer set over a pan of simmering water. Whisk constantly until the mixture is warm and the sugar has melted, about 2 minutes. Attach bowl to mixer fitted with whisk attachment. Beat on high speed until egg mixture is pale, thickened, and has cooled, about 6 minutes.

Remove bowl from mixer; sift together flour and salt over the top of egg mixture, and sprinkle with lemon zest. Using a large rubber spatula, carefully fold the flour mixture into the egg mixture, cutting through center and lifting gently over sides. When the flour is almost incorporated, pour butter down side of bowl, and gently fold in to incorporate.
Pour batter into prepared baking sheet; smooth top. Bake until center springs back when lightly touched, 7 to 12 minutes. Invert, and unmold cake onto a parchment-lined wire rack; peel parchment from cake, and let cool completely.

Assemble the cake: Cut cake crosswise into 3 rectangles. Set one layer, top side down, on a wire rack set over a rimmed baking sheet. Brush with half of the remaining strawberry purée. Spread a 3/4inch- thick layer of mousse over the top (about 2 cups mousse). Top with second cake layer, top side up. Brush with remaining strawberry purée, and spread with a 3/4-inch-thick layer of mousse. Place third cake layer on top, top side up.
Refrigerate least 2 hours (preferably overnight). Trim sides of cake to be straight.

Make the ganache: Bring cream just to a boil in a small saucepan over medium- high heat. Pour hot cream over the chocolate in a medium bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Stir until smooth. Stir in salt and lemon juice. Let stand until ganache is pourable and has cooled slightly. Pour ganache over top of cake, allowing it to drip down sides. Refrigerate assembled cake 1 hour before serving. Using 2 large spatulas, transfer cake to a serving platter. Garnish with strawberries.


ryan, maren and leah said...

Morg, you're quite the chef. The length of that recipe alone would have deterred looks delicious!!

janaya said...

so... how long did it take you to make? is this a set aside an entire afternoon with nothing else to do kind of recipe? cause it looks heavenly... but that recipe is super scary! :)

Nate, Morgan and Asher said...

it actually is not that bad at all. I made the mousse the night before so it could set in the fridge (I think it took me 30-40 minutes on Sat) then the next day I made the cake which is super easy and pretty fast. And the ganache is soooo easy and soooo fast. It literally takes like 10 minutes. The lengthiest part is setting it in the fridge after you assemble it, then again after you put the ganache over it. But it is so worth it!! It is not as scary as it looks. The only reason it is so long is because it tells you in detail what to do!