This mousse has a special twist you may not have thought of—Olive Oil. No, I’m not kidding, olive oil has been used for centuries in everything culinary and medicinal but most of us never think of it in desserts. That said, olive oil deserves your consideration not only for its flavor but its health benefits. Whether in a cake, cookie, mousse, or even a gelato, the right pure extra virgin olive oil can transform a regular dessert into a divine gastronomical experience.
This Olive Oil Chocolate Mousse is definitely delicious in its own right. I have been known to pipe it right into my mouth, especially when you add your favorite berries and organic pure cream to top it off or to layer. The topping, or layering, is as simple as mixing together sliced strawberries and raspberries (slightly mashed) with a touch of honey to draw out some of the juices and tossing them with fresh cream, basil, and mint. It’s the perfect sweet juxtaposition against the beautiful Olive Oil Chocolate Mousse that’s going to make you savor every bite…not to mention your family and guests begging for more.
Makes about 10 small portions (2 ounces) or 4 larger portions (6 ounces)
2 eggs, thoroughly beaten
3/4 cup whole, almond or coconut milk
6 ounces good-quality semi-sweet dark chocolate*
3 tablespoons freshly brewed strong decaffeinated coffee (optional)
1/4 cup finishing-quality olive oil
1 tbsp. maple syrup (homemade without sugar**)
1 1/2 tsp. pure organic vanilla extract
Tiny pinch fine salt
Sea salt or grey lavender salt, to serve
Lightly sweetened* whipped cream, to serve
* I use the no carb no sugar chocolate from Lakanto™, you can find them on their website by the same name OR a powdered pure Stevia product.
** Purchase pure organic maple extract. Bring water to boil for quantity desired. Add natural sweetener like Lakanto or Stevia, and add about 1 tbsp. of maple extract and taste. Keep adding sweetener and extract to desired sweetness. I always make at least one cup and keep the remainder refrigerated up to two weeks for my pancakes and other baking.
- Whisk the milk and eggs together, beating for at least a minute.
- Place in a small, heavy saucepan over low heat. Put a thermometer into the milk mixture and carefully heat, stirring frequently until the mixture reaches 160°F and then remove from heat.
- In another small, heavy saucepan, place the chocolate over low heat. (Break up the chocolate into shards, if not using small baking pieces.) Heat slowly, stirring frequently, until the chocolate is completely melted. Remove from the heat and stir in the coffee, if using, and then add the olive oil VERY slowly in drizzles.
- Add the milk and egg mixture to a blender or food processor, along with the maple syrup, vanilla, and a pinch of fine salt. Blend to combine the eggs, milk, olive oil, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt.
- With the food processor or blender running, slowly pour in the chocolate and coffee mixture and blend until well combined. The final mix will be frothy and smooth.
- Fill four 6-ounce dishes or eight to ten smaller ramekins and place in the refrigerator to chill. Depending on the size and depth of the dish, this mousse will take from an hour to three hours to fully set.
- Serve with whipped cream and just a pinch of rough salt.
OPTIONS: Either top with berry mixture that you crush or blend or layer fruit in-between mousse and top with single fruit for garnishing AND/OR use shaved chocolate for garnishing.
Dr. Gloria’s Kitchen Notes: In our South American Cooking Institute (Cotacachi, Ecuador) we use A LOT of chocolate, pure cocoa, and coffee because after all, Ecuador, has won world-renowned recognition for its chocolate (cocoa) and coffee. If I can’t easily source the semi-sweet with no sugar, then I use the Lakanto natural chocolate bar that I bring from the states.
Chocolate in itself, when pure and unsweetened, has a multitude of health benefits, take a peek at just a few:
Quick Look at Proven Health Benefits of Olive Oil
- Rich in Polyphenols that Provide a Multitude of Health Benefits including;
- Naturally-occurring antioxidants found in foods like fruits, vegetables, tea, chocolate, and organic no-sulfites added (NSA) wine. They’ve been linked to numerous health benefits, including reduced inflammation, better blood flow, lower blood pressure, and improved cholesterol and blood sugar levels. Cocoa is one of the richest sources of polyphenols— especially abundant in flavanols, which have potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects.
- However, processing and heating cocoa can cause it to lose its beneficial properties. It’s also often treated with alkaline to reduce bitterness, which results in a 60 percent decrease in flavanol content.
- So while cocoa is a great source of polyphenols, not all products containing cocoa will provide the same benefits, know your cocoa.
- Studies reveal cocoa is rich in flavanols—can lower blood pressure by improving nitric oxide levels and blood vessel function. Cocoa containing between 30–1,218 mg of flavanols can reduce blood pressure by an average of 2 mmHg.
- Cocoa can improve blood flow and reduce cholesterol. Eating up to one serving of chocolate per day may reduce your risk of heart attack, heart failure and stroke.
- Flavanols in cocoa are reported to support neuron production, brain function and improve blood flow and supply to brain tissue. They may have a role in preventing age-related brain degeneration, such as in Alzheimer’s disease—research is ongoing.
- Cocoa may exert some positive effects on mood and symptoms of depression by reducing stress levels and improving calmness, contentment, and overall psychological wellbeing—research is ongoing.
- Cocoa and dark chocolate may reduce your risk of diabetes, and maintain healthy blood sugar levels.
- Cocoa products are associated with a lower weight, adding cocoa to your diet may help achieve faster weight loss—research is ongoing as to type and quantity.
- The flavanols in cocoa have been shown to have promising anti-cancer properties in test-tube and animal studies—human trials are ongoing.
- Cocoa can promote healthy teeth by fighting bacteria that cause cavities, though this does not apply to sugar-containing products. It also promotes healthy skin by protecting it from sunlight and improving circulation, the skin surface and hydration.
- For heart health, include 0.1 ounces (2.5 grams) of high flavanol cocoa powder or 0.4 ounces (10 grams) of high flavanol chocolate in your diet. Adding cocoa can give a delicious chocolate taste to your dishes.
- Rich in healthy monounsaturated fats—rich in oleic acid
- Contains large amounts of antioxidants—biologically active and may reduce the risk of chronic diseases, may lower risk of heart disease and helps fight inflammation.
- Contains strong anti-inflammatory properties—its main anti-inflammatory effects are mediated by the antioxidants; a key is oleocanthal, which has shown in studies to work similarly to ibuprofen but without the drug side-effects.
- May help prevent strokes—studies show olive oil was the ONLY source of monounsaturated fat associated with reduced risk of stroke and heart disease.
- Is NOT associated with weight gain or obesity—moderate intake has shown in some studies to even aid weight loss.
- May fight Alzheimer’s—one key factor is a build-up of so-called beta-amyloid plaques inside the brain cells; studies show olive oil can help remove these plaques.
- May reduce Type 2 Diabetes—studies and clinical trials show olive oil, combined with a Mediterranean diet, can reduce the risk of Type 2 Diabetes.
- Can help treat rheumatoid arthritis—an autoimmune disease with deformed and painful joints. Olive oil appears to improve inflammatory markers and reduce oxidative stress, especially when combined with omega-3 fatty acids.
- Contains antibacterial properties—contains many ingredients known to inhibit or kill harmful bacteria, including Helicobacter pylori, a bacterium in the stomach that can cause ulcers and cancer.
There you have it, hopefully, this recipe and research will encourage you to go out of the “norm” and incorporate more organic, high-quality cold-pressed olive oil and unsweetened organic chocolate in your meal planning.