When I asked Bill what he would like me to prepare for him while I am gone for a few days, his answer was an unequivocal "Mousse please!". Yes, he is a softee and I know his mom spoiled him with homemade desserts pretty much all his life so his answer did not come as a surprise. I did prepare a few things to warm up after work during the five days I'll be gone but I know Bill. When I showed him where everything was in the fridge, his eyes immediately landed on these Vanilla, Salted Butter Caramel and Chocolate Mousses. And they were all the way in the back. Of course.
So where am I going for 5 days that he needs a fridge full of goodies? San Francisco! I am attending the 2009 BlogHer conference which will be held on Saturday. I am also one of the speakers at the conference! I am so psyched about this event for so many reasons. For starters just take a look at the program here. All these amazing bloggers giving of their experience and expertise, I am honored to be among them and hope to contribute as much as they are.
Then there are all these attendees that I will finely get to meet in person and finally hug silly until they call security because Tartelette is cutting their air supply from excitement! Friends kept tweeting they wanted to meet me, well I want to meet them just as much.
Last May, I was supposed to join Bill on a working trip near Jen from Use Real Butter and we immediately made the plan that I'd stay with her a few days while he'd work. That plan fell through. We were both upset at the circumstances and she asked if I'd be coming to San Francisco for BlogHer. She was. Maybe we could meet up there. This summer has been financially sucky so we were pretty much tied down not going anywhere for a long time. She emailed back the same day and said in her usual ways "Damn it Helen! You're going! Here are Frequent Flyers miles we are not using and you are sharing a room with me. Get a conference ticket and we'll figure something out."
Yes. That is the kind of chick Jen is and I am proud to call her my friend. She rocks. Period.
Man! Those tickets were hotter than the best Nutella crepes on a street cart in Paris. They sold out before I could even log on the computer. So waitlist it was. Drats! Then my name got tossed in the hat for potential speaker and the wait began. Either a ticket would come open or I'd be a speaker in which case I would not need one. Nothing happened on either front for a very long time. Then, I finally scored a ticket and three days later got an email about being a speaker (in case you are wondering, that ticket went back in the ticket pool).
So here we are...On Friday I get to squeeze silly one of the best gals I know and on Saturday I will be talking about "Your Blog is Great…now what? Letting your blog lead the way to new opportunity". I am honored, ecstatic and nervous all at once. Sharing this panel with Jaden and Amy gives the chance to see three different people with different opportunities, different paths and at different pit stops on their careers. I have no doubt this panel will be informative and fun. Did I say I was psyched already? Ok, ok....
Well, I am not done being psyched because my friend Anita from Married With Dinner extended an invite to stay with her a couple for a few days passed the conference and of course I jumped on it! Finally we get to hang out! We have plenty of fun things planned and I can't wait to tell you about it through pictures and emotions. There will be plenty of dinners, lunches and stories shared with friends and strangers and I hope to post a few fun shots while I am gone.
I know by now you must be pretty tired about me gushing about the next five days, so I will shut up and give you back some of the "good schtuff" I am lucky to experience everyday by hosting a little giveaway.
To win one of these adorable demi style aprons by The Hip Hostess (winner's choice) all you have to do is leave a comment on this post between Thursday September 24th and Sunday September 27th, midnight Eastern Time. My dear husband will draw the winner at random and I will put her/him in contact with The Hip Hostess to pick the preferred demi style apron. But that's not all! Deborah from The Hip Hostess generously offers all the readers of Tartelette a 15% discount on any order throughout October 15th 2009. Use the promo code TART (all caps) at check out. Very cool!
Enter Jen's to win an Ipod Nano and enter here to win a fabulous apron handmade by The Hip Hostess, so you can bake and groove in style. And no, we did not plan it, would not have worked, ahah!
Now you can understand why I loaded the fridge with tons of good things for Bill to eat while I am gone. I am sad he won't be able to walk around SF with me but I know he is not yet prepared for a room full of people saying "Oh my god it's you!" and hugging you every 5 minutes. He said mousse was just fine. Especially one that starts with a soft and silky Bavarian cream and combines delicious layers such as vanilla, salted butter caramel and chocolate...
Vanilla, Salted Butter Caramel and Chocolate Mousse:
Serves 4 to 6 depending on the size of your ramekins
Notes: you want to prepare the caramel part of this triplr mousse first as it needs to cool down properly before being incorporated to the rest of the base.
For the caramel:
1/2 cup (100gr) sugar
2 tablespoons (30ml) water
1/2 teaspoon fleur de sel or fine sea salt
1/4 cup (60ml ) heavy cream
2 teaspoons (10gr) unsalted butter
For the chocolate:
4 oz (120gr) dark semisweet chocolate
For the vanilla mousse base:
4 egg yolks
1/4 cup (50 gr) sugar
1 cup (250 ml) whole milk
1/2 vanilla bean
1 Tb (7gr) powdered gelatin, sprinkled over 3 Tb water
1 cup (250ml) heavy cream
Prepare the caramel:Place the sugar and water in a medium heavy bottomed saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Continue to cook until caramel in color. Remove from the heat and add the salt, heavy cream and butter. Stir with a wooden spoon until completely smooth. Let cool to room temperature.
Prepare the chocolate:
In a medium bowl set over a pan of simmering water, melt the chocolate until smooth. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
Prepare the mousse base:
In a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar until very pale. In the meantime, in a large saucepan set over medium heat, bring the milk and the vanilla bean (split open and scraped over the milk) to a boil. Slowly pour the milk over the yolks, whisking constantly. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan over medium low heat and cook until the cream coats the back of a spoon (as if making creme anglaise). Add the softened gelatin and stir until melted completely into the cream. Let cool to room temperature.
Whip the heavy cream to soft peaks and fold it into the cooled cream base. Divide the base into three equal portions (one will stay untouched).
Add a couple of tablespoons of the base to the caramel to lighten it a bit and stir with a spoon. Gently fold the rest of the alloted mousse base into the caramel with a spatula.
Do the same for the chocolate portion.
Layer all three parts evenly into dishes or ramekins and refrigerate for an hour.