22 August 2012

Cooking for a crowd and chocolate mousse

I get a warm fuzzy feeling in my stomach when I can provide loved ones with a tasty meal. You see, I'm slack most of the time. I'm terrible at keeping in touch with friends, my housekeeping skills are appalling, my organisational skills are 'interesting', my financial prowess is non-existant, but, I can cook. And, I think most importantly, I love it!

So when a dear friend of mine and my beloved invited us to a little soiree at his apartment for his birthday, I jumped at the chance to cook for his guests.

Dupree, as he likes to call himself and which I blogged about here, or as he is more widely known, Jamie, provides a great deal of support and friendship to my beloved, so the way I know how to show gratitude for this friendship is to cook.

And cook I did. For 25 people in fact. Arghhhhhh! This was honestly the most challenging cooking experience I've had to date. But I took the bull by the horns, got my organisational skills polished, got my head focused and did it.

The menu consisted of:

Asian style pork meatballs (GF)
Beef Rendang (GF)

Chilli con carne (GF)
Chicken and prawn wontons
Chocolate mousse shots with a blueberry flower on top (GF)
A number of the guests at the party were gluten intolerant, so after a little recipe tweaking, they were easy to accommodate and able to partake in all that I made, apart from the wontons.

As you can see from the food it was a carnivore's paradise. 

I used 3kg beef mince, 3kg chuck steak, 1.5kg chicken,
1kg pork mince, 8 chorizos, and 200g prawns
If you would like to cook up your own party storm here are some links:
  • Asian pork meatballs - I used this recipe from taste.com.au. To make it GF substitute the plain flour for GF breadcrumbs (in a food processor finely chop stale GF bread to make this), and ensure you use GF soy and oyster sauce (both are easily available in supermarkets).
  • Beef rendang - I used this recipe from Gourmet Traveller. I substituted the beef oyster blade with chuck steak (just make sure you give it plenty of time to cook so it is tender) and if you can't find galangal, replace it with ginger.
  • Chilli con carne - I used this fabulous recipe from an awesome site called The Self-Raising Kitchen. 
  • Chicken and prawn wontons - I'm afraid you will have to wait for another post on this one, as it is a secret recipe from my brother-in-law.
  • Chocolate mousse - I am going to share the recipe with you below. It is from the Edmonds Cookery Book. If you are from New Zealand you will recognise the name. Basically, every Kiwi household owns this fabulous book, which was first published in 1908 and gives you simple, everyday recipes and cooking tips. My dad is a Kiwi, hence why my whole family are proud owners of this great book. In fact my mum's Edmonds book would be about 40 years old now and is well loved. I hope you enjoy this very simple and very yummy chocolate mousse recipe.

Chocolate Mousse
by Edmonds Cookery Book
serves 4-6

Deliciously light and fluffy chocolate mousse
150g cooking chocolate (I use dark)
4 eggs, separated
300ml cream
2tbls sugar
grated chocolate

Break chocolate into the top of a double boiler, Stir over hot water (not too hot or you will ruin your chocolate) until chocolate has melted. Allow to cool slightly. Stir yolks into chocolate. Beat until thick and smooth.

Beat cream until think. Quickly fold chocolate mixture into cream.

Whisk egg whites until stiff but not dry. Gradually add sugar, whisking until think and glossy.

Fold half egg white mixture into chocolate mixture until well mixed. Repeat with remaining egg white mixture. Pour into your individual ramekins or one large one or shot glasses as I used for a cocktail dinner. Decorate with grated chocolate and some extra whipped cream, or simply cut a blueberry into quarters, but not to the very bottom, and open it out to look like a flower like I've done.

*Tip - I used my food processor, blender and hand blender to do all the different steps so you can get it done quickly and don't have to waste time washing in between steps. Whatever you do, if you choose to only use one blender, don't leave your egg whites sitting around. They will separate and you will have watery stuff left at the bottom. Also, when you are folding the egg whites into the chocolate mixture, be gentle, as you want your mousse to be lovely and light so don't knock the good work you put into it when whisking.



  1. Replies
    1. Thanks, Kellie. The crowd certainly seemed to enjoy it :-)

  2. Looks delicious especially those pork meatballs. And so happy to see someone using their Edmonds Cookery Book!!!

    1. I thought you would enjoy seeing me cook from the Edmonds, Sarah. I love my copy.

  3. You have to be the best cook and so "unflusterable" - you can come to my house anytime and bring your beloved with you. What a fabulous pair you are! And so well-fed xx

    1. Awww that is very kind of you. I do get flustered, but I seem to be okay in the kitchen. Watch out for the next post as I do take The Self-Raising Kitchn on tour to other places.