This mousse is so incredibly delicious! I made it for a filling for Tyana’s wedding cake. It complements the chocolate cake like nothing else. I usually go for a contrast with chocolate cake, so I thought hazelnut would be too sweet or too much chocolate (can that happen?). But my taste testers all voted for this mousse to fill the chocolate wedding cake. I also made chocolate cake with strawberry mousse filling for her wedding, along with carrot cake. The wedding guests raved about all the cakes, which brought me much joy.
For filling a large chocolate cake or several layers, double or triple the recipe. If you have too much mousse, you will find someone willing to eat the mousse plain. Some of the recipes on the Internet layer this mousse on top of a shortbread crust and finish with chocolate glaze. I made the whole cake, layered with mousse filling, and crumb coated with chocolate glaze and froze the entire cake ahead of the wedding, and it turned out just fine.
HAZELNUT MOCHA MOUSSE
- 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
- 3 tablespoons water or hazelnut liqueur, or a combination
- 1/2 teaspoon instant espresso powder
- 1/2 cup cream cheese or mascarpone cheese (do not soften first)
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon hazelnut extract, optional
- 1/2 cup (4 ounces) chocolate hazelnut spread (Kirkland Signature or Nutella)
- 1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 2 tablespoons Dutch-process cocoa
- 3 tablespoons sugar
Sprinkle gelatin over water or liqueur in a medium saucepan. Allow to stand for 5 minutes to soften gelatin. Add espresso powder. Heat over low heat just until gelatin is dissolved. Whisk in chocolate hazelnut spread until well combined. Remove from heat. Stir in extracts.
Whisk mascarpone or cream cheese into gelatin/hazelnut mixture in a large bowl until well blended.
Whip together cream, cocoa powder, and sugar in a large bowl of an electric mixer at low speed until just combined, then increase speed to high and beat until cream holds soft peaks. Whisk one third of whipped cream into mascarpone mixture to lighten, then fold in remaining whipped cream until well combined.
If using as a cake filling, immediately smooth onto cake layers and chill until set. Otherwise, pour into individual cups or a large bowl and chill for at least three hours.