Black and White Chocolate Mousse Tart

  • Serves: Makes one 9-inch Tart
  • Baking Temp (degrees F): 375 for the crust
  • Views: 11694
  • Comments: 5

Pie and photo by Orange Piggy © Sarah Phillips 
This recipe is a show stopper. It is a good example of an icebox pie is sort of like a cream pie, but it is made from a gelatin-like filling poured into a pre-baked crust and then refrigerated to set the filling. Top with shaved chocolate. This pie is rich so I advise serving smaller pieces than usual.


Instead of using my fingertips to press the crust mixture into the pan, I like to use a 1/4-cup metal measuring cup to tap down the crust. For the corners, I place cup right next to the side of crust, and when I tap it down lightly, the edge of the measuring cup helps define them for my tart. 

1 1/4 cups oreo cookie crumbs or chocolate graham cracker crumbs; from 9 full-size crackers (18 squares total)
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon instant espresso powder or instant coffee granules
1/3 cup (5 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon) unsalted butter, melted; measure and microwave one minute until melted

2 tablespoons water
1/2 envelope powdered gelatin (1/8 ounce or 1 1/4 teaspoons)
2 cups (one 12-oz bag) of white chocolate chips; use premium ones such as Ghirardelli Brand
1/2 cup whole or 2% milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 ounce semi-sweet or bittersweet dark chocolate

Preheat the oven and make the crust:
1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and place a foil lined baking sheet on the rack. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Generously spray a 9-inch or 9-1/2-inch tart pan with removable bottom with vegetable oil spray. Place empty tart pan on a baking sheet lined with foil.

2. To make the crust, in the tart pan, lightly toss the cookie crumbs, sugar, and espresso powder until well combined. Drizzle with melted butter and mix together. Press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides of the pan with your fingertips. Make sure the crust is evenly distributed and the side is compacted.

3. Bake for 6 - 8 minutes until it smells done and the crust is just becoming firm. Looks are deceiving. Slide tart shell from baking sheet to a wire cake rack; do not pick up the pan by its bottom, or you’ll crack the crust.

Make the white chocolate mousse:
1. Pour the water into a small heatproof cup. Sprinkle the gelatin over the water and let soften 5 minutes. Microwave uncovered at 50% power at 10-second intervals for about 30 to 45 seconds until clear. Do NOT let it boil. Otherwise, you need to start over with this step.

2. Place the chocolate chips in a medium bowl. Heat the milk in a heavy bottomed saucepan over low heat until just boiling. Immediately, pour hot milk over chips. Push down any chips not covered in milk with a wire whisk. Let stand 1 minute. Stir in one direction until melted and smooth. Let sit a few seconds again if unmelted and stir again.

Immediately, stir in hot gelatin mixture and vanilla. Place the bowl in a larger bowl of ice water bath, stirring every couple of minutes for about 10 to 15 minutes until mixture is cool. Don’t refrigerate or freeze to cool it; otherwise the gelatin will make the mixture stiffen. Strain in a fine mesh strainer if there are any small pieces of unmelted chips. Set aside
SARAH SAYS: I use ice baths often to cool down mixtures quickly, which saves time. To prepare an ice bath, place ice cubes about half-way into a 4-quart bowl. Generously sprinkle salt over the ice and add water to cover. Place contents to be chilled in dry 2-quart bowl and set in the ice bath.

3. Using electric hand-held mixer at medium-high speed, beat the heavy cream, sugar and vanilla in large bowl until medium-soft mounds form. Do not overwhip or mousse will be grainy. You can do this step in advance and refrigerate the cream. Whisk (don’t beat) again right before using. Set aside.

4. With a large rubber spatula, fold one-half of the whipped cream into chocolate mixture to lighten it. Then fold the remaining whipped cream. Spread the resulting mousse mixture in pie shell so the top is smooth and refrigerate under an inverted bowl for at least 8 hours, preferably overnight, until mousse sets and is firm.

Remove tart and garnish - about an hour or two before serving:
1. Set the tart pan on a stable base that's at least 3-inches high, such as a coffee can. The outer ring will slip away from the crust and fall to the countertop. To remove the bottom, set the tart on a flat surface and carefully slide a long, thin metal spatula (an offset one works best) between the shell and the pan bottom. Carefully slide the tart to a flat serving plate held at equal height.

2. Right before serving, garnish with dark chocolate savings: Warm a 1-ounce chunk of semisweet or bittersweet dark chocolate in a microwave, 45 seconds on 50% power. (Just warm the chocolate slightly; don't let it melt. You may also warm the chocolate under a desk lamp.) Using a vegetable peeler, shave the chocolate by pressing down lightly on the smoothest side or top of the piece. The harder you press, the thicker the pieces will be. Let them fall onto a sheet of waxed paper, then refrigerate for about 5 minutes to harden.

Sprinkle evenly over the tart right before serving.

Store tart covered in refrigerator for about 2 to 3 days.

Other Recipes