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Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Chocolate Mousse, Hamburger Patties & Wedges

Chocolate mousse is a favorite around here. I usually make it once a year, for a special dinner. Hubby is not a huge fan of sweets, so I offer to make any dessert he might like, and he usually picks this one. I cannot argue - this is right up there. And the possibilities of chocolate mousse being used with other desserts is endless. This keeps well in the fridge, and so it's also a great dessert if you need to make something ahead of time. Since you use separated eggs in this recipe, I sometimes also time it with making a pavlova - another great recipe to make ahead of time, and it will also keep for a good few days in a sealed container (without the fruit and whipped cream added on top).

For our "special" Christmas dinner, with just the two of us, I made hamburgers (ha! So Christmas-y, but you'd understand, if you had to cook a turkey, veggies, buns, etc, that hamburgers are much more comfortable to do in 30 degree heat if you live in Oz). And for dessert, Chocolate Mousse, from Betty Crocker. I've made it in the past with nice chocolate decorations, but this year it was kept very simple.


For the Hamburger patties, I've worked out this recipe through a little trial and error, which we like the best:

500g ground beef
1 egg
1-2 piece(s) of bread, see how the consistency of the mix is before you add more
onion, diced
garlic, crushed
1-2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
salt & pepper
(you could also add Italian herbs too)

Moisten bread with water, and squeeze out excess. Mush between fingers so there are no large lumps (I have a soggy bread phobia, and cannot stand to see/taste noticeable lumps). Dice onion and garlic and add everything into a large bowl. Add all other ingredients, approximate measurements. Blend everything together with your hands, and shape into 4 balls. Flatten balls into patties. I always make them a little larger than I would want, since they tend to shrink a little when you cook them. BBQ patties with some cheese on top, using BBQ sauce to taste. Makes 4 large patties.

For a special burger, try the Paul Newman Southwest style dressing on your burger - amazing!



(mustard powder, paprika, chicken salt, etc)

Wash potatoes thoroughly, and chop into wedges. The smaller, the better. Pat potatoes dry with paper towel. The drier, the better. Put potatoes into a bowl, and add oil to the bowl to coat the potaoes. Add spices as you see fit. I like crushed garlic, Italian herbs and rosemary. But you can add whatever you want. I sometimes add a little mustard powder, paprika, etc....It's best to keep a thin layer, if possible. Maybe do two separate batches in the oven, as needed. Bake at 425ยบ for about 30 mins.