So we went foraging last Saturday. Foraging. Yes. Foraging. I could be a hipster. Except for everything I am stopping me. Nonetheless, my husband and two quite willing friends foraged up a storm of blackberries. Also, of late, there has been a glut of family parties. This is lovely but with the amount of cake I’ve eaten as a result it really is no surprise that my glucose processing abilities are away with the fairies.
With this in mind, when I was asked to make something for my god-daughter’s birthday party I decided to buck the trend and make a mousse. I dare say if I had stuck to the recipe below it would have very almost qualified as a low sugar/ healthy-ish dessert. Unfortunately, as it was a birthday party, for a little girl with an obsession with girly things, in an atmosphere of gender neutrality and all that I felt I had to make a lurid pink, purple and cream mousse with pink macaroons and berries all over it. I even put a bit of pearlescent dust on the macaroons.
If you fancy replicating that particular number (that is a triple mousse of blackberry, white chocolate and raspberry) then follow the below recipe for the first layer. Let it set. Make the white chocolate and Disaronno mousse from my archives – but without the disaronno and amaretti. Pour it on top of the blackberry mousse. Let it set. Then for the raspberry mousse follow the below recipe again – using half the quantities, substituting raspberries for the blackberries and only use one tablespoon of sugar. Pour it on top and let it set. Decorate with berries, mint leaves and an old grating of white chocolate.
Back to the straight up blackberry mousse. The original recipe is from Jamie Oliver but I like mine a shade firmer and a little less sweet. It allegedly serves 8 people all the same.
Caster sugar 50g
Gelatine leaves 2.5
See what I mean? 50g eight ways is only 6 and a bit grams per person.
Pick out eight nice glasses or one pretty, big bowl.
Right so. Pop the blackberries in a big saucepan with 100ml of water and the caster sugar and put it on a medium-high heat. Let it warm through so the sugar is dissolved and the fruit starts to get all squishy. Ideally you’ll not want it to boil because it gets a bit jammy.
In a bowl place your gelatine leaves in some cold water to soften.
Take the blackberry pot off the heat. Place a sieve over a big mixing bowl and pour in the blackberry loveliness. Use the back of a spoon to smush as much of the fruity flesh through so you end up with mostly just seeds in the sieve. I got it down to about two tablespoons of unwanted seediness.
Discard the seeds.
Scoop out the gelatine and squeeze off as much water as you can then throw it into the blackberry juice. It should dissolve with a few seconds stirring. Be warned the blackberry liquid does need to be warm for this to work.
Put the newly gelatined liquid into the fridge to cool. You really need to do this bit. I was, unsurprisingly, impatient the first time and the mousse was a little looser than I might have liked.
When it is tepid or cooler to the touch, start whisking the cream. Whisk till the cream forms firm peaks. Take out a quarter of it and beat it into the blackberry liquid. This is just to get the two mixes closer in texture, making it easier to combine them.
Once smooth, add in the remaining cream and fold to combine. That’s it all made. Pour it into whichever bowl(s) you chose and place them into the fridge. The Jamie recipe says a few hours are enough to get it set but I think overnight or 8hrs is better. But do as you will and eat it knowing that its practically a health food.
(that’s me in the spoon)