dessert nirvana

In my most recent ramblings around Woodinville, I had the opportunity to visit and taste at Woodinville Whiskey Company. All I can say is “WOW!! Their small-batch handcrafted whiskey is truly AMAZING, and then …  northwest meets northeast …  they reuse the barrels to age maple syrup. This is not just maple syrup, it is beyond description!

My brain went into overload with ideas to serve it. So, I want to share with you my first recipe using this nectar of the gods. Plan to serve your mousse accompanied by a beautiful glass of Brian Carter Cellars 2011 Opulento, a port style wine from Woodinville. If you have not sampled this dessert wine, you are missing a sensory delight! Here’s to the end of a great meal!

Maple Bourbon Mousse


maple bourbon mousse
1 package gelatin
1 ½ cups heavy cream
6 tablespoons maple syrup 
       (I use Barrel-aged from Woodinville Whiskey Co.)
¼ cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon Bourbon Whiskey
       (or a little more, for the chef! I use Woodinville Whiskey)
dash salt
for garnish:
Decadent Chocolate Sauce (recipe follows)
confectioners’ sugar, for dusting

Lightly grease 6 ramekins, custard cups, or 12 muffin cups; set aside. 

In a small bowl, sprinkle gelatin over 2 tablespoons cold water to bloom. In microwave, gently heat to melt the gelatin, taking care not to overheat the mixture. Remove and let stand at room temperature to cool. 

Meanwhile, in large mixing bowl, add cream, syrup, sugar, whiskey and salt. Beat to soft peak stage. With the beater running, pour in the gelatin. When combined, spoon into individual molds and smooth the tops. Chill until set, 2-3 hours or overnight.

To serve, gently heat the molds by dipping them in hot water for a few seconds. Run a knife around the sides to loosen. Turn out onto serving plates. Top with chocolate sauce.  Makes 6 large or 12 small servings.  

Truly Decadent Chocolate Sauce

 The name says it all.

 1/2 cup heavy cream*
4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped

 Bring cream to boil, remove from heat. Stir in chopped chocolate; let stand 2 minutes. Whisk until sauce becomes smooth and shiny, about 2 to 3 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Makes 1 cup sauce.

Note: This sauce can be made ahead 1 to 2 weeks and refrigerated, but it will set up. Before using, you will need to reheat the sauce and stir. The sauce may also be frozen for up to 6 months. You may need only 1/2 recipe, depending on your choice of presentation. No worries — it’s highly likely that this sauce will disappear!

*Substituting whole milk for the cream can make a slightly lower-fat version of this sauce. However, DO NOT BOIL the milk. Add the chocolate to the milk and heat slowly, stirring until the sauce is smooth and shiny. Serve warm or at room temperature. Refrigerate covered.

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