Chocolate Terrine with Espresso Sauce
From Pastry Chef, Pascal Reverchon of Palio, NYC. This amazing dessert requires some effort but it is not out of the reach of average bakers. Plan ahead, organizing your igredients and tools and the results will be impressive.

Chocolate Walnut Cake

Scant 1/2 cup unbleached all purpose flour
2 Tbs unsweetened cocoa powder
1/3 cup finely chopped walnuts
3 Tbs finely ground blanched almonds
3 large eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar, divided
3 large egg whites, room temperature
2 Tbs unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature
2/3 to 3/4 cup of cold espresso for assembling the cake

Preheat oven to 350F and position rack in center of oven. Line a 15 1/2 inch x 10 1/2 inch jelly-roll pan with foil, leaving a 2 inch overhang at each end. Fold the overhang underneath the pan. Butter the foil and the sides of the pan. Lightly dust the bottom and sides of the pan with flour and tap out the excess flour.

Sift flour and cocoa together into a medium bowl, add the walnuts and almonds. Set aside. In a ovenproof medium bowl, whisk the whole eggs with 1/4 cup plus 2 Tbs of the sugar. Set the bowl over a saucepan of hot, not simmering, water. Whisk the egg mixture constantly for 3 to 5 minutes, until the sugar is competely dissolved and the mixture is warm to the touch (100F to 105F). Remove the bowl from the pan. Using a hand held mixer, beat the egg mixture at medium high speed for 3 to 7 minutes until it is pale yellow and forms a thick ribbon when the beaters are lifted. In a clean, grease-free bowl, beat the egg whites at low speed until frothy. Gradually increase the speed to medium-high and beat until they form soft peaks. Gradually add the remaining 2 Tbs of sugar and continue beating until stiff, shiny peaks form.

Using a rubber spatula, fold 1/3 of the beaten egg whites along with 1/3 of the flour/cocoa/nut mixture into the egg mixture. Continue gently folding by thirds until all are combined. Fold in the melted butter. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Bake the cake for 15 to 17 minutes, until it springs back when gently touched in the center. Cool the cake on a rack for 20 minutes. Using the foil ends for handles, lift the cake from the pan and set on the rack to cool completely. When cool, cover the cake with a flat baking sheet and invert. Carefully pull off the foil. Cover the cake with a new piece of foil and top with the baking sheet. Invert the cake again so it is right-side-up. Cover with plastic wrap until ready to assemble.

Chocolate Mascarpone Mousse

4 ozs bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 1/2 cups mascarpone*
1 cup heavy cream
3 Tbs coffee flavored liqueur (such as Kahlua or Godiva)

Melt the chocolate. (Click here if you need instructions) Let stand until tepid. In a large bowl, whisk the mascarpone and heavy cream until smooth. Using a hand held mixer set at medium-high speed, beat the mascarpone-cream mixture to soft peaks. Do not overbeat. Stir about 1/5 of the mascarpone cream into the melted chocolate until smooth. Stir in the Kahlua. Tranfer the chocolate mixture to a large bowl. Gently fold the remaining mascarpone cream into the chocolate. Do not overfold or the mixture will become grainy. Cover and refrigerate while you cut the cake.

*Mascarpone is not always available on Guam. The Cook's Thesaurus recommends the following substitute: 8 ozs cream cheese blended with 1/4 cup whipping cream.

Assemble the Cake

Retrieve the 2/3 to 3/4 cup of cold espresso. Cover a 14 inch x 14 inch piece of cardboard with foil, set aside. Using a serrated knife, trim about 1 inch off all sides of the cake so that is approximately a 7 1/2 inch x 12 inch rectangle. Cut the cake lengthwise in thirds so that you have 3 long strips about 2 1/2 inchs wide. Brush any loose crumbs off cake.

Transfer one of the cake strips to the foil covered cardboard. Using a pastry brush, generously brush the strip all over with some of the cold espresso. Fill a pastry bag (or quart size plastic bag with one corner snipped off to approximate a 1/2 inch opening) fitted with a 1/2 inch plain tip with the Chocolate Mascarpone Mousse. Pipe a strip of mousse along short end of the cake strip, then pipe a strip along one of the long sides. Continue piping 3 more long strips of mousse parallel to the first one until the top of the cake is completely covered. Using a flat metal spatula, gently smooth the top of the mousse.

Generously brush one of the remaining cake strips with espresso. Place this strip of cake on top of mousse-covered cake strip and gently press it into place. Pipe the remaining mousse over the strip, completely covering the top of it then gently smooth the mousse. Once again, brush the remaining cake strip generously with espresso. Press this strip on top of the mousse covered strip and gently press into place. Cover the terrine with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 to 6 hours or until the mousse is set.

Espresso Sauce

2 cups heavy cream
2 tsps instant espresso powder
6 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar

In a heavy medium saucepan, combine the cream and espresso powder. Bring to a gentle boil over medium-low heat, whisking until the espresso powder dissolves. Remove from heat. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until blended. Gradually whisk the warm cream mixture into the egg yolk mixture until blended. Return the combined mixtures to the saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened slightly. It is done when you can run your finger down the back of the sauce-coated spoon and a path remains in the sauce for several seconds. Do Not let the sauce come to a boil. Remove the pan from heat and immediately strain the sauce into a stainless steel bowl. Place the bowl in a larger bowl of ice water and stir the sauce for 10 to 15 minutes until cool. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold. (The sauce can be prepared up to 2 days in advance.)

To serve, prepare dessert plates with a dusting of powdered sugar then using a serrated knife cut the terrine into 10 slices. Lay the slices on prepared dessert plates and drizzle the sauce over. Garnish with toasted almonds and shavings of dark chocolate.

Yield: 10 servings