3 ounces good quality semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 ounces good quality bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 T. orange liqueur (recommended: Grand Marnier)
2 T. water
1/2 t. pure vanilla extract
1/2 t. grated orange zest
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
4 large eggs, at room temperature, separated
1/4 cup plus 3 t. sugar, divided
Pinch kosher salt
1/4 cup cold heavy cream
Combine the 2 chocolates, orange liqueur, 2 T. water, and the vanilla in a heat-proof bowl.
Heat in microwave in 44 second increments at 50 percent power until chocolate is melted and smooth. Cool completely to room temperature.
Whisk in the orange zest and butter until combined and completely smooth – no bits of butter remaining.
Place the egg yolks and 1/4 cup of the sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.
Beat on high speed for 4 minutes, or until very thick and pale yellow.
With the mixer on low speed, add the chocolate mixture. Transfer to a large bowl.
Place 1/2 c. of egg whites (save or discard the rest), the salt, and 1 – 1/2 t. of the sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.
Beat on high speed until firm but not dry.
Whisk 1/4 of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture; then fold the rest in carefully with a rubber spatula.
Without cleaning the bowl or whisk, whip the heavy cream and the remaining 1- 1/2 t. of sugar until firm.
Fold the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture.
Scoop the mousse into 6 individual ramekins.
Cover with plastic wrap and chill at least 4 hours.
If desired, garnish with a little Reddi-Wip. (I find that home made whipped cream is too heavy, and makes this dish way too rich.)
(Adapted from The Barefoot Contessa)