I have a confession to make, one night while the East Coast was prepping for a blizzard I was out strolling, taking pictures of pastry shop windows and thinking about desserts for Valentine’s…

photo(7)This is another of those classic desserts that I remember from way back when — my mom’s recipe calls for a dozen eggs — which I think would serve about 24, so I’ll cut it down to a more manageable size for February sweethearts. This recipe will serve 8.

CHOCOLATE MOUSSE

6 ounces very good semisweet chocolate pieces (like Valrhona or Callebaut), 5 tablespoons boiling water, 4 eggs separated, 1 tablespoon Cointreau, 1 teaspoon vanilla

Beat egg whites until stiff in a large bowl. Put the chocolate in a blender and whiz around until the pieces are powdery, about ten seconds. Turn the blender off and add the 5 tablespoons of boiling water, blend until smooth. Add the egg yolks, Cointreau, and vanilla, blend for five seconds more. Fold the chocolate mixture gently into the beaten egg whites. Chill in ramekins, or pretty little tumblers, or champagne glasses for at least one hour before serving.

My dad would make me sweet things on fly, usually on the weekends. I would be seated at the kitchen table and he would whip up something from his teen repertoire — when he worked at a soda fountain. Chocolate Sundaes, Chocolate Phosphates, and Chocolate Egg Creams. Here are recipes for all three.

CHOCOLATE SAUCE FOR AN ICE CREAM SUNDAE

2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, 1/2 cup sugar, 1/4 cup water, 2 tablespoons butter, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, dash of salt.

Put the water and chocolate in a heavy skillet and heat and stir until the chocolate is melted. Add the sugar and vanilla and bring to boil (keep stirring or it will scorch) for three minutes (the longer you let the sugar boil the more taffy-like the sauce will be when it hits the frosty ice cream — some people simmer the sauce for 10 minutes — your choice). Take off heat and swirl in the butter, then pour over ice cream.

CHOCOLATE PHOSPHATE

A Chocolate Phosphate is an Ice Cream Soda without the ice cream… Chill a twelve ounce glass in the freezer until it looks frosty then pour in 4 tablespoons of chocolate syrup (like Hershey’s) and fill with Seltzer Water and stir. That’s a Chocolate Phosphate.

CHOCOLATE EGG CREAM

First of all, there is no egg in a Chocolate Egg Cream. Follow the procedure for the Chocolate Phosphate and add a splash of half and half. Delicious!

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