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Pistachio White Chocolate Mousse Tart

It seems T.S. Eliot was right and April is shaping-up to be the cruelest month. It teases us with giddy anticipation as we leaf through our gaudy seed and bulb catalogues, planning our assault on the new gardening season. We dream wistfully of summer’s perky new styles, gaze longingly at our flip-flops and jump the season with flashy pedicures and fake-bake tans.

But, before you doff your parka, don that beachwear, and abandon comfort food to embrace a dismal diet, make this light and luscious Dark Chocolate- crusted, Pistachio and White- Chocolate Mousse Tart with berry topping. It is the promise of spring on a plate; imagine the dark-chocolate crust as the moist warming earth; the pistachio pieces as tender green crocus leaves gently nudging their way through the lingering layer of snow that is the fluffy white-chocolate mousse; the berry topping as the promise fulfilled. Happy now? Bon Appetit!

Pistachio White –Chocolate Mousse Tart

make 1 day ahead (serves 6-8)


For the crust:
2 cups dark chocolate cookie crumbs (Oreo works well)
3 tbsp. butter, melted

For the chocolate mousse:
8 oz. white chocolate chips
½ envelope. ‘Whip it’ (whipped cream stabilizer)
1 envelope plain gelatin
1 ¼ cups 35% cream
2 egg whites
1 tbsp. sugar
½ tsp. vanilla
¾ cup unsalted pistachios, shelled and skinned
12 oz. frozen berries (raspberries work well)
½ tbsp. sugar

For crust:
Line a 7 or 8 inch spring- form pan with parchment paper. Using your hands, combine cookie crumbs and melted butter until clumps form. Press onto bottom of pan to form a crust.

For mousse:
To skin pistachios, soak in hot water for 2-3 mins.Drain and rub between two layers of paper towel to remove brown outer skin. Then chop nuts finely.
In a double boiler, melt together white chocolate and a ¼ cup of the cream, then cool.
Reserve ½ tsp. of gelatin and dissolve the rest in ¼ cup warm water, add to cooled chocolate, stir well. Whip 1 cup cream, adding vanilla and ½ envelope ‘Whip it’ until stiff. Beat egg whites and 1 tbsp. sugar together until stiff peaks form.Fold melted chocolate and pistachios into cream, then gently fold-in egg whites.
Spoon mixture into prepared pan and chill overnight.
To serve: place berries in a sieve over a bowl to thaw. Pour juice from bowl into a small saucepan, add ½ tbsp. sugar. Cook over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat, add reserved gelatin, stir well.
Add berries and return to heat for 2 mins.
Cool and serve over slices of mousse tart.

Complementary Wines: Cassis, Gewürztraminer Late Harvest, Riesling: Beerenauslese

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