This is a quick and creamy, no-bake mousse pie. I made this using a 7 inch round cake pan with a removable base. You may use a pie plate or springform pan. It lasted 4 dessert servings for us. If you’re a family of 4, then you may have it twice. What I like about this pie is the ease involed in putting it together. NO BAKE. Plus it takes about half an hour or so to prepare the whole recipe. You can use other berries too. It’s absolutely your preference. It’s made with whipping cream…so I feel less guilty devouring this instead of a cheesecake made with cream cheese or mascarpone. I didn’t add eggs…less calories and makes it suitable for vegetarians.
1 cup Graham crackers crumbs * You may use digestive biscuits, wafer cookies or tea biscuits. As long as the crumb tastes good and will hold together, it should work.
2 tbsp powdered sugar * If the biscuit is sweet enough, you may omit adding sugar
3 tbsp Oil of choice or melted butter
1 tbsp Cocoa powder * Optional. I added cocoa for a choco twist
Pinch of spice powder like cinnamon, nutmeg or all spice * Optional. If you omit cocoa, spice up the pie base with any of these spices to add flavor to the plain base
- Mix together crumbs, sugar, and oil/ butter until well-combined.
- Prepare pan with foil or parchment paper. Grease the pan with oil spray or pan release. Line the sides and the bottom for easy removal of the pie. This saves times and stress!
- Use your fingers or a flat bottomed cup press the mixture evenly into the bottom of the 7 inch pie plate or cake pan. To avoid crumbs getting into the batter, press firmly to ensure the crust is well compacted.
- Refrigerate it for an hour
1 cup Strawberries, hulled and chopped * Can use frozen berries. If using strawberry compote, strawberry concentrate, preserve or jam, use just 3/4 cup. I used fresh berries.
1 cup Heavy whipping cream * Can use non dairy whipping cream. If you try using 25% butter fat dairy cream, the outcome may not be satisfactory. It needs practice and patience.
1/4 cup Sugar, divided * Use more or less as per preference when using jam, preserve or compote which already has lot of sugar. I like my mousse just pleasantly sweetened, not cloyingly sweet.
1 tsp Lemon/lime juice
1 tsp regular gelatin or 2 1/2 tsp vegetarian gelatin or 2 1/2 tsp Agar agar powder or 2 1/2 tbsp Agar Agar flakes. * Do not reduce the amount of vegetarian gelatin or agar agar stated, as strawberries are acidic and need extra gelling than other fruits. If not, the mousse will not set and you will have a strawberry milkshake mixed with biscuits.
1/8 cup Hot water if using Agar agar or vegetarian gelatin. I used vegetarian gelatin which called for hot water. Regular gelatin needs to be bloomed in cold water.
- Place the berries in a food processor and puree. Strain and discard seeds. Transfer puree to a bowl. On meduim heat, bring to a boil. Stir in 2 tbsp sugar and lemon juice. Set aside.
- For vegetarian gelatin and agar agar – Use hot water. Agar agar requires a rapid boil and not a mere simmer in order to activate. If using agar flakes, soak first for 10 minutes in the hot liquid. This makes it easier to dissolve. Bring the mixed liquid to a boil till dissolved. Let it cool, but do not let it solidify. Regular gelatin – Use cold water. Bloom gelatin in cold water by stirring it together and allowing to sit for 5 minutes.
- Add the berry puree and bloomed gelatin or boiled agar. Place mixture over the ice bath and stir frequently. The mixture has to cool, but the gelatin should not set up unevenly with lumps.
- Meanwhile, whip the heavy cream. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat cream and 2 tablespoons sugar on medium-high until firm peaks form, about 5 minutes. With a spatula, gently fold in puree mixture until combined taking care not to deflate the mousse, until it is of uniform consistency or leave streaks to get the marble effect.
- Pour mousse into cooled pie shell/base and smooth out the top. Place pie in the fridge for at least 4 hours (overnight is ideal) to set up.
- Push the removable base of the cake pan. The pie will come out easily with the parchment or foil. Peel away parchment from sides of pie. Slice it using a sharp long knife and serve cold.
Note – Keep in mind that highly acidic ingredients such as lemons, strawberries, oranges and other citrus fruits may require more agar-agar than the recipe calls for. Also, enzymes in fresh mangoes, papaya, and pineapple break down the gelling ability of the agar-agar so that it will not set. Cooking these fruits before adding them to a recipe, however, neutralizes the enzymes so that the agar-agar can set. Source – http://www.peta.org