Mary Anne here. Ah…the holidays are upon us once again, and this year Passover and Easter arrive within a week of each other. As I’ve written in the past, when my mom married my step-dad, George, the Ellicott brood donned both Easter bonnets on Sunday and Yarmulkes on Friday night (the boys, of course!). And we embraced our newfound diversity whole-heartedly.
Over the years, my mom has become quite a maven in the venerable world of Jewish fare and has graciously shared her recipes for Passover Seder. Mom whips up a Matzo Ball Soup with the most delicate of dumplings and a broth so rich it stands on its own. Her dense Chocolate Matzo Cake is demanded at every Seder she attends (or she might as well not show up), and her Charoses (which I PROMISE to post next year) is probably my all-time favorite Seder dish. Mariel picked up the whisk last year when she created a traditional Pot Roast, worthy of any dinner table – no matter the occasion – and over the years, I’ve offered up my Roasted Lamb as well as a complete menu for Easter Brunch and Easter Dinner.
Anticipating the impending holidays this year, I once again plumbed the depths of my mom’s recipe file and plucked out this pearl! A gluten-free dessert that’s sinfully easy, this not-too-sweet chocolate treat is the perfect ending to either a bountiful Passover Seder or a rich Easter dinner. In Mom’s version of Chocolate Mousse Cake, there are five – count ‘em – five ingredients along with maybe a garnish or two, and it literally takes less than 30 minutes to prepare. Added bonus: all of the ingredients were in my pantry and fridge!
Whether you celebrate Passover or Easter (or are lucky like me and celebrate both!), we wish you a blessed holiday filled with the love of your family and a belly full of wondrous fare!
Gluten-Free Chocolate Mousse Cake
Note:You will need a mixer and a 9” spring form pan for this recipe.
6 large eggs, separated – stock
2/3 cup sugar – stock
6 oz. semi-sweet chocolate – stock
3 Tablespoons strong, brewed coffee – stock
1 Tablespoon Cointreau or similar liqueur (optional)
Optional garnishes: chocolate curls, whipped cream, raspberries, or mini chocolate chips, to name just a few
Grand Total Assuming Well-Stocked Pantry: $0.00!
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter or lightly spray a 9” spring form pan with oil.
2. Using a double boiler or a saucepan set over another pan of simmering water, melt the chocolate in the coffee, stirring occasionally.
3. Meanwhile, in a medium-large bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Set aside.
4. In a separate bowl, using the same beaters, beat the egg yolks with the sugar until light and fluffy.
5. When the chocolate is melted, remove from the heat. Stir in the liqueur if using.
6. On low speed, beat the chocolate mixture into the sugar mixture until thoroughly combined.
7. Fold in the egg whites, incorporating fully.
8. Pour about 2/3 of the batter into the prepared cake pan. Place the remaining batter in the refrigerator.
9. Bake the cake for 25 minutes. Turn off the oven but leave the cake in for an additional 5 minutes.
10. Transfer to a cooling rack and allow the cake to cool in the pan for about 1½ hours. During this time, the center of the cake will settle, while the edges will crack and form a higher rim.
11. Loosen the cake by running a sharp knife along the inside of the pan. Remove the sides of the spring form pan.
12. Spread the chilled, reserved batter evenly over the center of the cake, up to the edge of the rim. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to the day before serving.
13. To serve, run a sharp knife along the bottom of the cake pan to loosen. Carefully slide the cake onto a platter. Garnish, if desired, with whipped cream, berries, and chocolate curls, if desired.