mini chocolate chip cookie cups with chocolate mousse • just say yes

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Just say yes. Well, most of the time.

Would you like to dance? “I thought you’d never ask. Yes, I’d love to dance.”Would you like to get a little toasty tonight? “Why not? Yes, I would!!!” Would you like dessert? “Ummm yeah…what a silly question.”

Would you like a smoke? “NOOO!!” Always say not to drugs because drugs are bad, mmm’kay?

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So when your significant other, friend, or family member offers to unexpectedly stop by a store to buy you a little gift on your way home, just go with it and say “yes” without feeling any sort of guilt or remorse. Just smile cutely and gracefully after the generous offer has been presented to make things better and less awkward…if it was even awkward to begin with.

Neat things may come out of saying yes and seizing opportunities as it did in this occasion. Someone special offered to stop by World Market during our little outing and get me an item of my choice. Lucky me! “YESSS!!” was my reply. I chose a mini cupcake pan and that’s how these mini chocolate mousse cups came to be.

special gift–mini cupcake pan

See, sometimes all you need to do is say “yes”!

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* For these recipes the ratio for cookie dough (1 sugar :2 fat : 3 flour) has been used but modified. The basic ratio for swiss meringue (1 1/2 sugar : 1 egg whites) has been used for the mousse and then altered by adding ganache and soft peak cream (Creme Bavanois) to make the mousse.

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Hypothesis:

– The cookie dough tart will act as a sweet and crunchy container that will help create a nice contrast to the smooth and soft chocolate mousse filling.

– Adding extra sugar and egg to the basic cookie dough ratio will make for a crispier cookie that lifts, creating a slightly less dense crumb.  Let’s try to be crunch masters!

– The chocolate mousse plus the chocolate chips in the cookie dough will make this dessert be extra chocolatey. I’m excited!!

– Finely chopping the chocolate chips in a food processor will allow to roll the cookie dough into a thin layer without encountering large chunks of chocolate.

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Materials/Ingredients for Mini Cookie Dough Cups:

scale

4 oz butter

4 oz sugar

1/2 tsp vanilla

1 egg

6 oz AP flour

1/2 tsp salt

1.5 oz–2 oz chocolate chips, finely chopped

**Yield: About 30 mini cookie cups**

Procedure/Recipe for Mini Cookie Dough Cups:

1. Cream butter and sugar until well combined.

2. Add vanilla and egg to mixture and continue mixing thoroughly.

3. Combine AP flour and salt and incorporate them into mixture slowly while continuing to mix.

4. Fold finely chopped chocolate chips into dough. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate until it chills and firms up, about 1 hour.

5. Grease mini cupcake tins with vegetable spray. Roll out dough until it reaches a thickness of 1/8″.

6. Use a 2 1/4″ round cutter to cut rounds of dough. Insert round of cookie dough into mini cupcake tins, pushing dough against the sides and being sure that the dough fills every space. Repeat until all mini cups are filled with dough.

7. Place a round cut of parchment or wax paper over cookie dough and place pie weights or baking beans over parchment paper. This step will prevent the cookie dough from rising while baking. It will keep its flat shape.

8. Bake cookie dough cups/shells at 350 F for a total of 10–14 minutes until edges are golden brown and rotating tray midway baking time.

Materials/Ingredients for Chocolate Mousse:

scale
4 oz semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
4 oz heavy cream

2 oz egg whites

3 oz sugar

2 oz heavy cream, soft peak – Crème Bavanois

**Yield: About 15 oz; Leftover mousse can be frozen for 4-6 weeks**

Procedure/Recipe for Chocolate Mousse:

soft peak cream and ganache

  1. Make ganache:
    1. Heat heavy cream and bring to a simmer.
    2. Put chopped chocolate in a large bowl and pour simmered heavy cream over chocolate. Allow cream and chocolate to rest for about a minute so that chocolate softens and melts.
    3. Stir mixture gently from the center until everything is well combined.
    4. Set chocolate-heavy cream mixture aside and allow it to cool completely at room temperature.
  2. Make Swiss meringue. Place egg whites and sugar in a mixing bowl that’s over a pot of hot water on the stove.
  3. Whisk sugar and egg whites over heat until egg whites and sugar reach a temperature of 140 F – 165 F. It should feel hot to the touch and you wouldn’t want to let your finger hang out in there for more than 2 seconds. Remove from heat and whip in a mixer at medium-high speed until stiff peaks form. 
  4. Whip heavy cream with a whisk until soft peaks form and cream bends and falls off of whisk.
  5. Fold half of Swiss meringue into ganche.
  6. Fold ganache/Swiss meringue mixture into reserved Swiss meringue.
  7. Fold cream into chocolate/meringue mixture without over-folding.

Procedure/Recipe for Mini Cookie Dough Cups with Chocolate Mousse:

1. Place chocolate mousse in a piping bag that has a # 3 star tip.

2. Pipe chocolate mousse inside each cup and serve.

Observations: 

– I wouldn’t really recommend making the Swiss meringue unless you have a Kitchen Aid stand mixer with a whisk attachment. Swiss meringue becomes very marshmellowy and you need a lot of power and force to whip air into such sticky consistency. I don’t think my handheld mixer was powerful enough and therefore, I wasn’t pleased with the consistency. If you don’t own one, just make a French meringue instead. That’s what I ended up doing after all!

– Forgetting to place weights or deciding not to over cookie dough will cause this to happen:

Is this necessarily a bad thing? Not to me. In fact, depending in the mood you’re in, you might prefer to eat these mini cups this way. Not placing weights over dough while baking creates a pillowy and softer product but the cup shape is not as pronounced. To create a cup shape, weights must be placed over dough.

Notice the difference between the following mini cups. The one on the left was baked with weights/baking beans and the one on the right wasn’t.

The one on the left is thinner and has a more concentrated flavor. Its texture is crispier and it also makes a nice container to hold the chocolate mousse. The one on the right souffléed and rose as it baked because there weren’t any weight pressing it down. Its texture is softer and fluffier and its shape is not really considered a “cup” but you can still pipe some mousse over it and it will still be delicious.

Notice the difference when you cut into the two…

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Results/Conclusion: Yummm…I say “yes” to both! What about you?

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