Sunday, October 4, 2009


A couple weeks ago, Lindsay at POM Wonderful sent me a special present in the mail - a box of 8 bottles of POM 100% Pomegranate juice! This stuff is so good for you - full of antioxidants - and has a unique tart flavor. Derek immediately broke into the bottles for cocktails. He mixes Pom with orange juice, lime juice, and tequila. I wanted to see what I could do cooking with the juice in more savory meals.

My first inspiration was half a butternut squash that was in my fridge. I cut it into chunks and roasted it with olive oil, salt and pepper.

After roasting, I cooled these a bit and then tossed the chunks with arugula. For the dressing, I mixed Pom juice with minced shallots, dijon mustard, rice wine vinegar and olive oil.

The salad was served in this beautiful sliver salad bowl that my Aunt Sue brought me from Mexico as a shower gift.

For the main course, I seared scallops and topped them a Pomegranate White Wine Sauce.

Pomegranate White Wine Sauce
1 cup pomegranate juice
2 Tbs minced shallots
juice of half a lemon
1/4 white wine
1 Tbs unsalted butter, cut into small bits

Simmer pomegranate juice in small saucepan until reduced to 1/2 cup. Add shallots, lemon juice, and white wine and simmer a couple more minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in butter, 1 or 2 bits at a time.

Excellent of over seared scallops or any delicate white fish.

I had a very crazy week at work, and somehow the only thing that was going to help me decompress on Saturday was chocolate mousse. I had a small round of Taza Vanilla that I thought would be just perfect for mousse for 2.

I chopped it all up and then melted it with butter and good rum over a double boiler.

I added to this mixture an egg that had just been laid that morning - there was even still a feather on it!

I separated the egg and cooked the yolk over the double boiler with a little sugar and water, whisking it into a marshmallowy froth.

The yolks were whisked into the chocolate mixture and the whites were whipped to soft peaks then lightly whisked in to lighten the mixture.

Then I whipped up some cream and folded that in.

I meant for this to be a dessert for 2, but it was so rich Derek and I could only finish half of our dishes!

Taza Chocolate Mousse
1 2.7 oz package Taza Vanilla (any Taza flavor would be good)
1 Tbl unsalted butter
1 Tbl good rum (or organge or coffee flavored liqueur)
1 large egg, separated
3 Tbls sugar, separated
1 Tbls cold water
1 cup heavy cream

Finely chop chocolate and place in a medium heatproof bowl with butter and rum. Place bowl over a saucepan with about 1 inch of gently simmering water. Stir until melted and combined - careful not to let it get too hot. Remove from saucepan and set aside to cool slightly.

In another heatproof bowl, whisk together egg yolk, water, and 1 Tbl sugar. Place over saucepan with simmering water and cook for about 3 minutes, whisking constantly, until mixture is soft and marshmallowy. Set pan aside to cool slightly.

Add yolk mixture to chocolate mixture and whisk to combine.

Place egg white in the bowl of a large stand mixture and beat at high speed until starts to froth. Add 1 Tbl sugar and beat until white is glossy and soft peaks form.

Add 1/3 of egg white to chocolate mixture and whisk until just combined. Continue to add remaining white and whisking until just combined.

Clean bowl of stand mixer and add 1 cup heavy cream and remaining Tbs sugar. Beat until soft peaks form. Very gently fold half of whipped cream into chocolate mixture, 1 scoop at a time. Scoop mousse into dessert cups or ramekins and chill for 2 - 4 hours. Serve with remaining whipped cream.

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