There’s something absolutely irresistible about the flavor of parsnips and blue cheese – it’s like magic. And here, the two are paired to make the most luxurious, weightless mousse!
Served with a flavorful tomato coulis, this mousse is a delightful appetizer – one that wakes up the tastes buds without filling the stomach, making it a perfect candidate for a multi-course dinner party!
Food & wine pairing: Alsace, Pinot Blanc with Gorgonzola-parsnip mousse
A full-bodied, aromatic white – one that’s not too acidic – is best with this delicate but flavorful first course. Pour a Pinot Blanc from Alsace, a Viognier from Southern France or California, or a Riesling from the Finger Lakes in Northern New York State.
Parsnip mousse with Gorgonzola Dolce and tomato coulis
active time: 30 min
For the mousse
- 6 cups spring water
- 1 teaspoon sea salt (to blanch the parsnips)
- 1 lb (455 g) parsnips – peeled and cut in 1″ pieces
- 4 oz (170 g) Gorgonzola Dolce or any other mild blue cheese – cut in 1″ pieces
- 1/3 cup heavy cream
- 2 extra large eggs
- 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
- freshly ground white pepper to taste
For the garnishes
- 1/2 recipe tomato coulis with shallots and white wine
- herb sprigs (fennel greens, dill, basil, chervil…)
- extra virgin olive oil
- finely ground white pepper to taste
- 6 non-stick timbale molds (2 1/4” diam. x 2 1/4” high) or 6 third-cup-capacity ramequins – buttered and floured
- Preheat the oven to 375ºF (190ºC).
- Step 1: Place the water in a medium pot and bring to a boil. Add the salt and parsnips and fast-simmer, uncovered, for 10 to 12 minutes until tender. Drain and transfer to a bowl to cool slightly, about 5 minutes. Place the parsnips in the bowl of a food processor and process until smooth. Add the Gorgonzola and continue processing until the cheese has melted. Add the cream, eggs, salt and pepper and continue processing until well incorporated, about 15 seconds, scraping the sides of the bowl once. Spoon the parsnip mixture into the prepared molds, filling them three quarters of the way. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until risen and tops are golden. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 to 15 minutes before un-molding.
- Cook’s note: You can prepare the mousse up to 6 hours ahead and keep them at room temperature, or refrigerate them for up to 2 days. When ready to serve, re-heat at 375ºF (190ºC) for 6 to 8 minutes until warm.
- Step 2: Place a large spoonful of the tomato coulis in the center of each plate. Spread with the back of the spoon in a 6” long strip. Un-mold the mousse and place them top-side-up in the center of each plate. Garnish with the herb sprigs, drizzle with a little olive oil, finish with the pepper and serve.