White Almond Mousse with Stewed Apricots and Orange Sauce
This is a subtle, elegant and silky dessert that is great to serve at a special dinner. The flavors of the stewed apricots and orange blend beautifully with the subtle sweetness of the white almond mousse. It’s a wee bit labor intensive, so save it for when you want to impress.
16 dried apricots – quartered
1 cup of apple juice
1 cup of water
4 cups rice milk
4 tablespoons agar agar flakes
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tablespoons kuzu root starch
Zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons almond butter
1 ½ cups fresh orange juice
¼ cup slivered almonds – lightly toasted in a dry skillet
Prepare the apricots:
Place the apricots, juice, water and pinch of sea salt in a thick bottomed sauce pan and bring to a boil. Cover and turn down to simmer until the apricots are soft and puffy–about 25 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside
Prepare the Mousse:
In a thick-bottomed saucepan, heat the rice milk with the agar agar and vanilla. Bring them to a gentle boil and then turn down to simmer. Simmer for about 15 minutes or until until flakes are dissolved. Stir occasionally to prevent the agar agar from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
Dissolve 1 tablespoon of kuzu root starch in a little cold rice milk or water and stir it into the rice milk mixture. Stir well to prevent lumping and continue to stir as you raise the heat back to a brief boil. Kuzu needs to boil in order to thicken properly. Reduce heat and add the lemon zest and almond butter. Whisk briskly to blend.
Beginning with 1 tablespoon rice syrup and adding more if necessary to achieve a mild balanced sweet flavor, sweeten the mousse mixture. Remember that the apricots will add a lot of sweetness so no need for the mousse to be too sweet.
Remove the rice milk mixture from the heat and pour into glass or stainless steel baking dish to cool. You can place it outside, near a window or in the refrigerator until firm
Once it has set, put the hardened kanten in a blender and blend until smooth and creamy. OR you can use an immersion blender in the original saucepan
Prepare orange sauce:
Carefully bring the orange juice with a tiny pinch of sea salt to simmer. Dissolve the second tablespoon of kuzu root starch in a little cold water and stir into the simmering juice – add enough kuzu to achieve a saucy consistency.
Add a little rice syrup to cut the sourness of the orange juice – how much depends on how sweet or sour your oranges are
Assemble your dessert:
In 8 dessert bowls or parfait glasses divide the stewed apricots, spoon the mousse over the apricots, top with orange sauce and finish with toasted almond slivers