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Before starting this Chocolate & Pear Mousse Cake recipe, make sure you have organised the necessary ingredients for the pistachio biscuit.
For the pistachio biscuit: Crack the whole eggs into the stand mixer recipient.
Add the castor sugar.
Whisk the eggs and castor sugar over a bain-marie until the preparation reaches 50°C.
Finish beating with a food mixer until the temperature goes down to 25°C.
In the meantime, sift the flour.
When the preparation has risen (halfway up the bowl)...
... add the pistachio paste. To facilitate the incorporation, combine the pistachio paste with a little amount of preparation beforehand, using a whisk.
Add to the preparation...
... and add the sifted flour at the same time. Work in vertical motions for the preparation not to collapse.
To facilitate the incorporation, combine the melted butter with a little amount of preparation beforehand...
... and add to the preparation. The butter will give added softness to the biscuit. The consistency will be more compact, less crumbly.
Combine gently until the butter is completely incorporated.
Pour the pistachio génoise on a Silpat baking mat placed on a perforated baking sheet.
Spread into an even layer with a cranked spatula.
Bake in a fan-assisted oven at 170°C (gas 3) for 10 to 12 minutes.
When cooked, leave to cool. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Remove the cold biscuit from the Silpat baking mat and transfer onto a sheet of greaseproof paper.
For the chocolate and pear insert: (preferably make the day before) Heat the milk to 40°C.
The use of a laser thermometer is essential for this operation.
Pour over the milk chocolate, which has been melted and brought to 40°C as well.
Combine well to make a ganache. When the preparation has a temperature of 35°C...
... add 1/3 of whipped cream to facilitate the incorporation.
Then little by little, add the preparation to the whipped cream...
... folding gently.
Place a tart ring on a baking sheet, then fill halfway up with the chocolate preparation. Arrange the pear slices on top, then cover with the chocolate preparation.
Even the surface with a cranked spatula and place in the freezer.
For the pear mousse: Organise all the necessary ingredients.
Steep the gelatine sheets in cold water.
Pour the castor sugar and pear purée in a saucepan.
Bring to a boil.
When the sugar is completely dissolved, drain the gelatine and add to the saucepan.
Combine with a whisk until the gelatine has dissolved completely. Leave to cool at room temperature.
In the meantime, drain the pears and cut into cubes. Place on a paper towel to absorb as much syrup as possible.
When the purée is down to about 25°C, add 1/3 of the whipped cream...
... to facilitate the incorporation. Combine vigorously with a whisk.
Pour the preparation over the remaining whipped cream...
... and combine gently with a rubber spatula.
Cut a disc from the pistachio biscuit, using a mousse ring with a diameter of 26cm. Using a brush, moisten the biscuit with syrup.
Place the biscuit disc inside a vacherin ring that is slightly wider (diameter 28cm).
Pour half of the mousse inside the ring.
Spread evenly and create a volcano shape, so that the crème goes all the way up the ring sides. This is important to get rid of air bubbles.
Spread half of the pear cubes over the mousse. Bury them in the mousse.
Remove the frozen chocolate insert from the ring and place it on top of the mousse.
Pour the remaining pear preparation...
... and the rest of the pear cubes. Bury them in the mousse...
... and even the surface with a metallic spatula.
Cover with cling film and refrigerate for several hours. The chocolate and pear insert will slowly defrost while the pear mousse sets.
For the meringue decorations: In the meantime, make the meringue decorations. Organise all the necessary ingredients.
Pour the egg whites in the stand mixer bowl.
Add the castor sugar.
Combine with a whisk to incorporate the castor sugar.
Place the recipient over a bain-marie prepared in a saucepan.
Whisk the preparation until hot. When touching the preparation with the tip of your finger, you should feel a stinging sensation due to the heat. Watch the intensity of the heat, as it could cause the egg whites to coagulate.
Place the recipient in the food mixer and beat...
... until you obtain a meringue. Continue beating until the meringue is cold. The Swiss meringue is now ready.
Scoop the meringue into a piping bag fitted with a plain nozzle (diameter 12mm).
Pipe 4 meringue dots in the corners of a baking sheet, then place greaseproof paper on top.
Pipe the meringue into small sticks, with a length of about 6cm (equivalent to the height of the ring).
Sprinkle the meringue sticks with icing sugar...
... and bake at 100°C (gas 1/4) for about 2 hours, preferably in a fan assisted oven.
For the finish: Remove the cake from the freezer.
Remove the cling film.
In a saucepan, melt 200 grams of clear glaze on low heat. Add 2 or 3 tablespoons of water.
Slice the pears.
Arrange them on the surface of the cake, creating a swirl shape.
When the glaze is hot and smooth, soften it with a whisk and apply on top of the pears with a brush...
... and coat the whole surface with a fine layer of glaze.
To remove the ring, heat the sides with a blow torch...
... and gently slide it upwards.
Place the cake on a cake board.
Arrange the meringue sticks all around the sides of the cake...
... lining them up vertically. Reserve in the fridge.
For the dark chocolate shavings: Melt the chocolate couverture in the microwave for a few seconds, then pour on a black steel baking sheet.
Using a cranked spatula, spread into a thin, regular layer.
Leave the chocolate to set at room temperature. If room temperature is too hot, refrigerate briefly.
With a sharp knife, scrape the surface of the chocolate to create shavings.
Sprinkle the chocolate shavings on the surface of the cake.
Finish by placing a small piece of gold leaf sheet in the centre. Enjoy!
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