Introduction to mousses (and yoghurt mousse recipe)

I always planned to move on to mousses this week, and by chance my dear friend Anne sent me the Mamamia blogger competition in conjunction with Rachel’s gourmet yoghurt.

I decided against entering in the end after reading the T&Cs closely, but did play around with a recipe using yoghurt as the basis for a mousse.

To take a step back, mousses generally comprise four components – the base, the egg foam, a setting agent and whipped cream.

  • Bases are the flavour element to the mousse and can be fruit purees, custards or ganache.
  • Egg foams will add lightness and volume to the mousse – Italian meringue or pâte á bombe (made from egg yolks and cooked sugar) are most commonly used.
  • The most common setting agent is gelatin although agar agar can be used as a vegetarian substitute.
  • Finally, whipped cream contributes to a mousse’s rich, creamy texture.

Over the next few weeks I’ll explore the different mousse types including Bavarian creams, fruit mousses and of course chocolate mousse.

In the meantime, I’ve included some tips for using sheet gelatin and also the recipe I developed for the competition using yoghurt instead of cream.

Tips for using sheet gelatin

Gelatin sheets can be purchased at specialty stores (I actually got mine at ASDA once!) and are generally easier to use than powdered gelatin. Ratios are usually 1 leaf for 100ml of cream or puree.

You simply need to soak the sheet of gelatin in a bowl of cold water and leave for 5 minutes. Lift out of the water and either add to warm liquid, or if the mixture is cold you’ll need to melt the softened sheet gently in a saucepan.

One big tip – always add your mixture to the gelatin rather than the other way round.

Yoghurt mousse with gingersnap base

Rachel’s yoghurt is one of those products where the fruit puree and the yoghurt are separated in the tub. This is very handy because it essentially removes a couple of the processes when making mousse. It’s also low-fat which can only be a good thing!!

I loved the idea of the black plum and roasted fig flavour combination so decided to add ginger for a bit of extra spice.

Black plum and roasted fig yoghurt mousse
Black plum and roasted fig yoghurt mousse

2 x 560g tubs Rachel’s black plum and roasted fig yoghurt
5 x gelatin leaves*
1 packet gingernut biscuits, crushed
100g melted butter
Glace ginger to decorate

Pour the yoghurt into a large bowl but reserve the fruit puree from one of the tubs.

Bloom the gelatin in cold water for 5 minutes, then transfer to a saucepan to melt over a very low heat.

Let the pan cool slightly, then pour the yoghurt in a mix well.

Make the base by incorporating the crushed biscuits with the melted butter. Spoon 2 tbsps of mixture into 6 individual moulds (I made mine using PVC piping) then press down.

Place a spoonful of the reserved fruit puree onto the biscuit base.

Pour over the yoghurt mix, then refridgerate for 4-6 hours.

Carefully remove the mousses from the moulds, and top with finely shredded glace ginger.

*Rachel’s yoghurt has pectin listed as one of its ingredients which must be used as a setting agent for the puree. I didn’t want the mousse to be too solid, so reduced to 5 gelatin leaves that will hopefully set the yoghurt.

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