..and then there is this bunch of guys, all ex GS and all CBS Alumni, who are very good friends, even if their lives took very different paths. They try hard to get together once in a while to share their experiences and… to drink good wine. There is the one who moved back to Greece to become an Angel Investor, always very keen on finding the right business opportunity… but only if it is under the shining sunny greek sky AND only if it gives him the chance to be on vacation 3 months a year! 😉 He is a pretty good wine estimator and he managed to match his wine love with his financial background being very active in the wine futures market. Basically he buys cases of wine before they’re even bottled because he bets on its price. Payment of the cases is made at an early stage, a year or 18 months prior to the official release of a vintage. This way the wines might be considerably cheaper during this period than they will be once bottled and released on the market.
There is the other one who is the typical Italian lover, who loves girls of any type, works very very hard (!) and spends most of his time in Brazil, for business – of course. He is certified sommelier but he doesn’t buy wines, he drinks ours! 🙂 And then there is Mr. M, who is not an Angel (at least, not an Investment Angel!), he is not a wine futures buyer, nor a certified sommelier but he loves wine and good food, so every time Mr. Greeky comes back to London, we have dinner together at Casa Mia, and every time we end up eating and drinking A. LOT.
These dinners are always very nice because yes – they took different paths in life, but no matter where they go, they take a little of each other everywhere.
We drunk Barbaresco Pajore’ 2009 di Sottimano, Bordeaux Château Gruaud Larose 1996, Barolo Ca’ Viola Sottocastello 2006 and Sauternes Château Les Justices 2001.
To enjoy good wines, chocolate is perfect. So I made this nice Chocolate Bavarian Mousse with Chocolate Sponge and Mr M… that’s is going to be in the next post though.
Charlotte au Chocolate – Chocolate Bavarian Mousse with Chocolate Genoise Sponge (revised)
Ingredients – 5’’ mousse ring (quite small)
Chocolate Genoise Sponge
50 gr eggs yolks
20 gr caster sugar
50 gr soft flour
10 gr cocoa powder
60 gr egg whites
40 gr caster sugar
20 gr chopped pistachios
Chocolate Bavarian Cream
125 ml whole milk
40 eggs yolk
65 gr caster sugar
125 ml whipping cream
15 gr icing sugar
2 leaves of gelatine
25 gr dark chocolate
10 gr cocoa powder
Cocoa powder for dusting
Turn your oven on at 190°.
Sieve flour and cocoa powder together.
Cut a piece of parchment paper as long as the inside of your ring and as tall as the height of your ring. Cut off 1/3 of the height. It’s going to be necessary to pipe the sponge on, once ready.
Whisk the egg yolks with 20 gr of sugar until whitish.
In a round bowl whisk the egg whites and stop when you reach the stage of soft peak.
This is when you lift the whisk and the whites make a peak that drops slightly.
Usually, when the egg whites are for a cake, mousse or a soufflé, where it has to be folded into other ingredients, the peak should always be soft. The one thing that will prevent whisked egg whites from reaching their full-blown potential is the (even) tiniest presence of grease. So always wash the bowls in mild soapy water, rinse in very hot water, then dry them with an absolutely clean tea cloth.
Then add the 40 gr of sugar in two times.
Add the whites mixture to the yolks one and mix.
Add the dry ingredients too, and fold it.
The final mixture needs to stand proud and firm. Pipe it (with tip n.6) on a silicon mat as in the picture and dust it with the chopped pistachios.
The stripe will be the side of the mousse/ring, the circle are one for the bottom and one for the middle.
Pipe another one, just in case you need to fill any holes.
Bake it until it bounces back, approximately for 8 minutes or so.
When ready leave it to cool down on the silicon mat.
In the meanwhile prepare the bavarian cream.
Warm the milk on a pot with half the sugar, whisk the yolks with the remain sugar until pale.
Soak the gelatine leaves in cold water.
Pour half of the milk mixture onto the eggs and sugar, whisking continuously until smooth and creamy, then return the mixture to the saucepan. Place the pan over a medium heat and stir continuously until the mixture has thickened enough to coat the back of the spoon or of the spatula. This is the creme anglaise.
Now continue off the heat.
Squeeze the water out of the gelatine leaves and add them to the mixture.
Stir until totally incorporated.
On a Bain Marie, in a bowl melt the chocolate and add the cocoa powder, stir it thoroughly.
When the chocolate is ready, add the creme anglaise to the chocolate bowl, little by little, and gently stir it in.
Sieve this mixture into the egg yolks bowl and leave it to cool down.
Take the sponge off the mat and fill the ring. The lenght of the stripe has to fit the ring. The side of the ring has to be ¾ covered by the sponge, then cut a round base for the bottom and a smaller circle to be placed in the middle of the mousse.
Whip the whipping cream and add the icing sugar.
Put your chocolate mixture on iced water, add the whipped cream by inclusion and fold it in.
Fill the ring with the mousse and put the smaller sponge circle in the middle of it, press it down and level the mousse with a palette knife.
Chill it in the refrigerator for at least a couple of hours.
Dust the top with cocoa powder and remove the ring before serving (!).