Normally I try to put the fresh fruits and veggies center stage but I had this idea to make vanilla mousse and I couldn’t get it out of my head. I am still not sure if it’s really a mousse but that’s what I’m calling it for now until someone tells me otherwise.
I sauteed the peaches in a syrup made of bourbon and brown sugar. Since I was also going to add graham crackers and pecans I thought I’d keep with the somewhat Southern theme I had going with this recipe.
The thing I was most nervous/excited about was the vanilla mousse. I used this classic Chocolate Mousse recipe and altered it to make it vanilla. I made a vanilla custard, whipped cream and merangue and then mixed them together to make the mousse.
Thankfully, it came out exactly how I wanted it to. Fluffy, foamy, lightly sweet, a perfect base for the peaches, which were topped with graham crackers and toasted pecans. All topped with fresh whipped cream.
- 2 large, ripe peaches, halved, pitted, peeled and sliced
- 3 Tablespoons of bourbon
- 2 Tablespoons of brown sugar
- 2 graham crackers
- 1/4 cup of halved pecans
- 1 cup of heavy whipping cream
- 4 large egg yolks
- 1/4 cup of water plus 1/2 Tablespoon of vanilla extract (pour vanilla extract into 1/4 cup measure and then fill the rest of the way with water)
- 2 large egg whites
- 4 Tablespoons of sugar, divided
- 1/8 teaspoon of kosher salt
- Combine egg yolks, diluted vanilla, salt, and 2 Tbsp. sugar in a large metal bowl. Set over a saucepan of gently simmering water (do not allow bowl to touch water). Cook, whisking constantly, until mixture is lighter in color and almost doubled in volume and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the mixture registers 160 degrees. It should be light yellow and custardy in texture.
- Remove bowl from pan. Let stand, whisking occasionally, until room temperature.
- Stir bourbon and brown sugar in a skillet over medium-high heat until sugar is completely dissolved and simmering. Add the peaches and cook until they soften. The time will depend on how ripe the peaches are. Set the peaches aside to cool.
- In a clean skillet toast the pecan halves and then crush them. Crumble or crush the graham crackers and mix together in a small bowl with the crushed toasted pecans.
- Beat 1 cup of heavy cream and 1 Tablespoon of sugar in medium bowl until stiff peaks form; cover and chill.
- Using an electric mixer, beat egg white in another medium bowl on medium speed until foamy. With mixer running, gradually beat in remaining 1 Tbsp. sugar. Increase speed to high and beat until firm peaks form.
- Fold egg whites into vanilla custard in 2 additions; fold half of whipped cream into mixture just to blend
- Put equal amounts of vanilla mousse in the bottom of 6 glasses. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours so mousse can set.
- Top mousse with a layer of bourbon peaches, then a layer of graham cracker and pecan mixture and then a dollop of the remaining whipped cream.