Thursday, September 26, 2013

This working thing...

Working seriously gets in the way of my writing time.  Lessons to plan, papers to grade, classes to teach... But I love it.  My daily interactions with my students make every exhausting exhilarating second worth it.  My 8th graders are making a movie to share with their pen pals in France.  My POL (Phenomenon of Language) students are learning Esperanto and even wrote poems today and shared them with each other.  My 7th graders make me laugh every day, as I force them talk to me in French and explain their ideas using the words they already know.

Today, we were treated to madeleines and mousse au chocolat by one young lady.  Ahhhh... the régime took a serious hit today.  It was well worth it, though.  I'll do better tomorrow.

We had an amazing assembly this week.  Spoken word poetry by Sacrificial Poets.  Two handsome, talented young men came to recite poems they wrote about very personal issues.  Tears flowed freely from my green eyes when one of the fellows performed a poem written about his mom working as a maid.  I asked him afterwards if he had recited it for her and he said yes.  Wow.  My students loved their poetry and I think that made Esperanto poems easier.  The performances made me think of Grand Corps Malade, a French spoken word poet whose work I really like (as well as his deep voice speaking French).


Katie's Mousse au Chocolat

1 3/4 cups whipping cream
12 ounces quality semi-sweet chocolate chips
3 ounces espresso or strong coffee
4 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon flavorless granulated gelatin

Chill 1 1/2 cups whipping cream in refrigerator.  Chill metal mixing bowl and mixer beaters in freezer.

In top of a double boiler, combine chocolate chips, coffee, and butter.  Melt over barely simmering water, stirring constantly.  Remove from heat while a couple of chunks are still visible.  Cool, stirring occasionally to just above body temperature.

Pour remaining 1/4 cup whipping cream into a metal measuring cup and sprinkle in the gelatin.  Allow gelatin to "bloom" for 10 minutes.  Then carefully heat by swirling the measuring cup over a low gas flame or candle.  Do not boil or gelatin will be damaged.  Stir mixture into the cooled chocolate and set aside.

In the chilled mixing bowl, beat cream to medium peaks.  Stir 1/4 of the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture to lighten it.  Fold in the remaining whipped cream in two doses.  There may be streaks of whipped cream in the chocolate and that is fine.  Do not over work the mousse.

Spoon into bowls or martini glasses and chill for at least 1 hour.  Garnish with fruit, if desired, and serve.

If mousse is to be refrigerated overnight, chill for one hour and then cover with plastic wrap and return to refrigerator.

Bon appétit to poets and students!  

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