Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte


Whole Torte, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteThis Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte is a showy torte that is actually easy to accomplish. It’s like the best chocolate covered strawberry you ever ate!  A simple French cake, the Reine de Saba, was a favorite base for many of our cakes at the bakery.  It is chocolaty, moist and holds up as a base better than any other chocolate cake we made.  We would keep these in the freezer and use them as needed.

To get cake layers for the Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Cake to come out flat without humping in the middle, spray the middle only of your pan.  Place parchment on top and spray the middle only.  We used this at the bakery and it worked really well.  If you spray the sides, or otherwise prepare them, the sides of the cake will rise faster than the middle in the oven. It will then slide down the greased sides of the pan causing the humpy center.  By not spraying the sides, the cake will cling to the sides unable to slide down, much like an angel food cake.  The center can then catch up with the sides for a flat layer.

We used an unusual method at the bakery of getting the eggs and the chocolate into the batter.  The eggs don’t want to easily incorporate into the butter/sugar mixture.  By adding one egg, which may not fully incorporate,  then the chocolate, then the other egg, it will come together without curdling which is the problem we had originally when we added all the eggs at once.  Also, do not let the chocolate become cold, it should be lukewarm but not hot.

The mousse for the Chocolate Srawberry Mousse Cake uses two chocolates, white and semisweet that mellow it out.  Bittersweet chocolate can be used if desired but I am in the semisweet camp.

When it comes to the strawberries, try to find ones that are mainly the same size.  I know this can be a pain as they pack them by weight and not size.  If they are the assorted version, simply cut more of the top off the big ones when removing the stems to achieve strawberries of the same size.  

A couple of tips for instant success.  If you over whip your cream (like I did) just add a little more cream and mix on low.  If it is too liquid, raise the speed on the mixer and whip until it is correct.  If it is still over-mixed, add a bit more cream to get the right consistency.  A  young lady who worked for me discovered this when she over-whipped 12 quarts of cream.  Knowing I was not going to be excited about this turn of events, she figured out what to do.  This was our go to at the bakery when we over-whipped the cream.  The other tip regards the egg whites.  For maximum height have them at room temperature, whip them until the whisk of the mixer leaves a trail in them and then add the sugar and continue beating.  It is better to under-whip than over-whip both the cream and the egg whites if you are uncertain.  Over-whipping will make it difficult to fold everything together smoothly and you will knock out a lot of the air built up in the whipping.

Although this Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte looks difficult, do give it a whirl as it is just a matter of steps, all of which are easy.

Reine de Saba Base
Reine ingredients, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte
1/4 cup flour (35 grams or 1 1/4 ounce)
1/4 teaspoon baking soda4 ounces semisweet chocolate (4 ounces)

1/2 cup butter, softened (114 grams, 4 ounces or 1 stick)
1/4 cup sugar (50 grams or 1 2/3 ounce)
2 eggs

Spray the center of a 9 inch round pan. Pan Prep 1, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte Line with parchment circle Pan Prep 2, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torteand spray center only.  Pan Prep 3, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteSet aside.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Whisk together the flour and baking soda.  Set aside.

Melt chocolate over a double boiler or at half power in the microwave for approximately 2 minutes. Set aside but keep it lukewarm, but not hot.Reine de Saba melted chocolate, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Cream the butter and sugar on low.  Reine de Saba, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Add one egg, beat well on low and then add the chocolate.  Beat to incorporate chocolate completely.  Add remaining egg and last the flour mixture.  Pour into the prepared pan and smooth out.

Bake for 20 minutes.  Cool; release, remove parchment and turn right side up.Reine baked, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Finished batter weighs 395 grams or approximately 13 3/4 ounces.  The baked layer is 3/4 inch high.

Notes:  For a 10″ round or square pan, use 1 1/2 recipes for a 9×13 inch pan double the recipe.  Watch the baking time as you don’t want to over-bake these or they will be dry.


9×3 cheesecake pan or a 9×3 springform pan
Reine de Saba layer cooled
2 quarts strawberries, the same size as much as possible
Chocolate Mousse, below
Chocolate Glaze, below

Release the Reine de Saba layer by using a small, flexible, metal spatula.  Keeping the spatula pressed against the side of the pan, go around the whole pan.  Reine, releasing, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TortePlace a round over the top of the cake pan, turn it upside down and release the layer.  Reine, with parchment, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteRemove the parchment, Reine, parchment off, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torteplace the bottom of the pan on the layer Reine, with pan bottom, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torteand turn it right side up.  Place it in the pan.Reine, halfway in pan, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Reine, in pan, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteCut the stem ends of the strawberries flat.  Cut as many strawberries in half vertically as needed to go around the inside edge of the pan.

Strawberries all around, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteFill in the entire pan with whole strawberries. Strawberries filled in, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteIf they are too tall, simply cut more off when stemming them so the strawberries are about the same size.

Make the Chocolate Mousse below and pour it over the strawberries.  Mousse being poured, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteRap the pan on the work surface several times while filling to seat the mousse between the strawberries and eliminate any air pockets.  When you rap the pan, holes around the side may appear, simply fill them in Mousse with air pockets, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torteand level the top. Mousse being spread, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Mousse completely spread, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Place in the refrigerator to set up.

Chocolate  Mousse

Mousse ingred, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte 6 tablespoons butter (90 grams or 3 ounces)
12 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate (340 grams)
3 ounces white chocolate (85 grams)
5 egg whites, room temperature (150 grams or 5 1/4 ounces)
1/3 cup sugar (75 grams or 2 1/2 ounces)
3/4 cup 40% or heavy cream, whipped to medium peaks

Combine the butter and both chocolates in a large bowl.  Mousse, chocolates and butter, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TortePlace them over a double boiler with simmering water below or microwave them at half power.  I used the microwave and it took 3 minutes at half power.  Mousse, chocolates and butter melted, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteYou can see by the photo it didn’t look melted.  But when whisked it became smooth.  If not add a bit more time at half power and whisk again.  Set aside but keep it at lukewarm temperature.Mousse, chocolates whisked smooth, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Place the egg whites in a mixing bowl Mousse, egg whites in mixing bowl, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torteand beat on high until the whisk leaves a trail in the whites. Mousse, whites before sugar is added, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteGradually add the sugar.  Mousse, sugar added to egg whites, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteBeat to medium peaks.Mousse, beaten egg whites, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Stir 1/4 into the chocolate mixture to lighten it.  Mousse,1/4 added to chocolate, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Mousse, egg whites stirred into chocolate, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TortePlace the remainder of the beaten whites Mousse, remainder of egg whites on chocolate, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torteand the whipped cream on top. Mousse, cream on top of whites, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteFold in by placing a rubber spatula in the middle of the bowl, touching the bottom.  Mousse, folding 1, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteScoop the mixture to the edge of the bowl nearest you and turn it over. Mousse, Folding 2, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteTurn the bowl slightly and continue this motionMousse, folding 3, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte until everything is one uniform color.  This technique keeps much more air in the mixtures than if you stirred everything together.Mousse, folded, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Yield:  Approximately 890 grams or 2 pounds

Chocolate Glaze

Chocolate Glaze ingredients, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte2/3 cup 40% or heavy cream
5 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate (140 grams)

Place the cream in a small pan.  Heat until very hot and steamy but do not boil.  Chocolate Glaze, hot cream, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteSubmerge the chocolate under the hot cream. Glaze, chocolate in, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Glaze, chocolate submerged under cream, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteLet it sit for a few minutes.  Whisk smooth.  Do not whisk to vigorously or you will get a lot of air bubbles in the finished glaze.Glaze, whisked smooth, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Pour over the top of the set up mousse.  Pick the pan up and rotate it so it covers the entire top.Glaze poured on mousse, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Glaze-tilting 1, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Glaze, rotating, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Glazed, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteChill until set up.

To release the tart a hair blower and large can are needed.

Releasing tools, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

To remove the torte (this is one of the reasons I prefer a cheesecake pan over a springform mold), heat the edge briefly with a hair blower set on high.Releasing with dryer, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Do not overheat or you will melt the mousse.  Place the pan on a fat can about double the height of the side of the pan.  Grasp the side of the pan and slowly move it down until it clears the bottom of the pan.  Releasing-sliding down 1, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Releasing-sliding down 2, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Releasing-sliding down 3, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Releasing-sliding down 4, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Release the bottom of the torte by sliding a metal spatula under the layer.  Transferring Tart 1, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse TorteUsing two pancake turners, placed between the bottom of the cake and the bottom of the pan on opposite sides of the torte, Transferring Tart 2, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Tortepick up the torte and transfer it to a serving dish or cardboard round.Transferring Tart 3, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Yield:  1 – 9″ Torte, 12 to 16 servings.Finished Slice, Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

Pastry has not only been my profession, but my passion. If there is anything in particular you would like to see or any questions about baking or pastry, please let me know. Be sure to subscribe so you don't miss a post!
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4 thoughts on “Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Torte

  1. Apricot

    Oh Helen, Just what have we done here…the recipes have ounces and metric (I am in Yorkshire in UK)..and the step by step is wonderful..(ace photos…)
    I am Coeliac and diabetic…and can only look and dream…just cant go down to the kitchen …and make one of these.
    I read the European tarts book…often… and sit and drool…

    There is one thing..for all other readers out there…buy the book…treat yourself…you are in for a seriously good time…

    With love and best wishes….

    Janet & Smokie the kitty

    1. hfletcher Post author

      Hi Janet: So excited to hear from you. I write the recipes with metrics because I know that Europeans, especially those in the UK use them. Besides I work in grams because it is sooooooo much easier than ounces. I learned this when I was a consultant to Cuisinarts, the food processor company.

      May I use your kind words about European Tarts in my book section?

      You are the very best and I will keep you in mind as I write.

      All best to you and Smokie,


  2. Vicki Bensinger

    Wow that’s beautiful Helen. I can’t wait to try that. I need to pick up one of those pans. I have plenty of springform pans but not this one. Great tutorial.

    1. hfletcher Post author

      Hi Vicki: Thanks for the comment. Once you get a cheesecake pan, you will never go back. We couldn’t have baked without these at the shop. Kitchen Conservatory has them. Stayed tuned. There is so much more coming.

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